FDC youth Byamugisha picks forms to run for president

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Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) youth leader Moses Byamugisha has picked presidential nomination forms.

Byamugisha was among the first to declare intentions to run for President in 2021 elections.

“As promised, I have this morning picked Presidential nomination forms from the national electoral commission offices,” he said on Monday.

“For the next 40 days, together with my campaign team we will be gathering signatures from across the country. Let’s join hands and push this together.”

Victoria University

His vote catchword is Championing an Inclusive Youths-led Change.

He is among the 36 contenders who are eyeing the top seat in the land.

Who he is.

Byamugisha became active in opposition politics at the height of the 2001 presidential election as a young man, after Dr Besigye had declared his intention to run against Museveni during the popular reform agenda days.

The office of the “Elect Besigye Task force of 2001” of our Bugangari sub county where am born was in my father’s house in Bugangari town and so I volunteered to work in an that office as an attendant since I was in holidays, to receive any information about campaigns in our area, and share it with respective leaders and mobilisers of reform agenda in the Sub county.

Myself and other many young colleagues formed ourselves into a youth wing of reform agenda and our main role was to mobilise more young people in our Sub county to support Col Dr Besigye and all other opposition politicians on various positions.

After the 2001 elections, due to the political persecution that ensued that forced Dr Besigye into exile, our activities slowed down and we were to resume again during the countrywide exercise of opening FDC party branches/offices and towards 2005 with the historic return of Dr Besigye on 28th October 2005 when we received him at Entebbe airport in large numbers.

I had joined Law Development Center then doing a Diploma in Law, and at LDC, I continued to popularize the FDC agenda and values.

I graduated at LDC at the end 2005 retreated back to Rukungiri and joined the 2006 general campaigns in my district.

Again myself and other youths within Rukungiri district formed ourselves into a vibrant district youth mobilization team, this time under the registered FDC party.

We moved in every parish of Rukungiri district campaigning for all opposition candidates and we worked so hard that this time our performance in the district increased tremendously.

For all these years I was only an active youth mobiliser.

I did not hold any elective position either in my village or at the district.

Our victory in the presidential election of 2006 was robbed and many of my young colleagues got frustrated with the results declared by the Kigundu Electoral Commission.

As young opposition activists, we had several ideas on how we thought we should respond to a regime that had stolen our vote but after consideration of a number of factors, we resolved to continue mobilizing the country and Ugandans for mass protests to bling the regime to it’s knees and cause the necessary reforms in government.

I joined Uganda Christian University in 2008 to do a degree in Law, where I immediately begun mobilizing students into actively participating in activities of opposition FDC.

In my second semester after joining University and while at an international student conference in Kigali, I was voted as the Ugandan representative in the East African Students Union (EACSU), an association that brings together all young men and women in higher institutions of learning across the five EAC countries of Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.

I travelled several times to all those countries with my colleagues, meeting young people in these countries and holding capacity building workshops, making them understand our roles as young people in the governance of our countries, the need to participate in the activities of the EAC and to hold our governments accountable.

In 2010, I traveled to India with a colleague to represent UCU in an international moot competition but I made sure I take that advantage of this tour to have an important meeting with the youths leaders of the Indian National Congress and I had an interaction with them on how best we as young people can participate in the governance of our countries.

We got mobilized at University, strengthened the FDC UCU Chapter and we were able to skilfully convince the UCU administration to allow the historic visit of Dr Besigye’s to this university, a visit which became a game changer in our university’s student politics and inspired many students and recruited many into FDC .

In 2009 just one year after I had joined this University, I contested for Guild President and I was overwhelmingly voted by the majority, was announced and declared by the University’s Electoral Commission headed by the Dean of students as the winner.

But a few days later as I was busy forming my cabinet waiting to swear in, the University administration overturned the results, giving a lot of lousy excuses but quietly arguing that a Christian university cannot be led by a “Besigye boy” who is so involved in the national opposition politics.

The students were angry but the admin announced a fresh election and blocked me from running again.

In the following year 2010,the students “revenged” back by voting me as the President of the Law faculty a very influential position in the students politics where I now found a platform to continue pushing for reforms both within and outside campus.

While I was in my last year, Dr Besigye was again nominated in October 2010 for Presidential FDC flagbearer, I had just begun my last semester but I also felt I needed to make a contribution to the national politics.

I therefore contested with other four of my colleagues in FDC and I was overwhelmingly voted as the FDC flagbearer for Western Youth MP, a responsibility that saw me traverse the whole country with Dr Besigye, mobilizing more young people to support change in the 2011 presidential election.

I was busy campaigning but also carrying the red law books in the car boot to do some small reading since my last exams were in March 2011.

Although we finished presidential elections in FEB 2011, I had to continue my own Western Youth MP campaigns which also ended in March and I returned to class to do exams which by God’s grace I passed and graduated in July 2011.

From then, I have happily participated in a number of defiance campaigns like Walk To Work that saw me happily go to Luzira prison, (for the first time) NOT because I have stolen anyone’s chicken or mattoke but because I have refused to give in to injustice of Mr Museveni.

We have visited all districts a number of times in our national mobilization and; I have been into many high institutions of learning to reach out to more young people and recruit them into FDC party.

Today, am particularly engaged with others in a massive youth mobilization campaign aimed at building a critical mass of young people, capable of stimulating the activities of our FDC party and also mounting pressure on the dictatorship through massive defiance campaigns.

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