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Political Context

Period 1962-1971 First Obote Era
Uganda attained its independence from United Kingdom (UK) on 9th October 1962 .The independence  was followed by   relative political and economic stability until 1971 when Idi Amin staged a successful military coup and overthrew Milton Obote government.

1971 -1979 Amin Era
Idi Amin’s government was characterised by violence and mismanagement of the economy  that reduced Uganda to a failed state. Uganda’s economy was in shambles and all necessities of life were either scarce or very expensive.  Over 500,000 people lost lives during this period. Idi Amin was removed in 1979 through a liberation war by combined forces of Ugandans with the support of the Government of the Republic of Tanzania.

Liberation struggle era
Political and economic turmoil did not end with the removal of Idi Amin but  continued between 1979 and 1985. During this period there were a number of changes of government and the general elections organised in 1980 were disputed by a majority of Ugandans. The disputed elections  were followed by a five year civil war across the country which left a number of people dead.

Yoweri Museveni Era
In 1986 the National Resistance Movement (NRM) led by Yoweri Museveni took power and started a period of sustained economic and political renewal. During the first decade, the government focused on restructuring  the economy through pro-market reforms and increasing the legitimacy of government institutions through political liberalization.

The successes in Northern Uganda were disrupted by  Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) which waged a war against the government. Thousands of people were killed during the conflict and  many people were  displaced from their homes. After protracted peace efforts, the LRA was pushed out of Uganda in 2005, and there have been no major security incidents in the country since then. Economic activity and normal life has resumed in northern Uganda and the internally displaced persons have generally returned to their home areas.

1995 Consititution
A new constitution was promulgated in 1995 and the country has progressed towards multi-party democracy. General elections have been held every five years since the new constitution was promulgated.

Following the promulgation of the 1995 constitution, President Museveni was elected to a first term through a non-party election in 1996. He was re-elected in 2001. The constitutional amendments approved by a referendum in July 2005 introduced multi-partyism and Parliament lifted the two (five-year) presidential term limits, which allowed President Museveni to seek a third term in office.  NRM Party headed by Yoweri Kaguta Museveni  has won the multi-party elections held in 2006 and 2011 respectively.

The NRM goverment is faced with the following challenges;

  • Corruption in public offices
  • High cost of living,
  • Governance
  • Managing the succession debate

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