Background information on the Forum for Democratic Change Uganda

In 2004, The Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) of Uganda was formally established as response to certain decisions made by the National Resistance Movement (NRM) and governmental body during that time. A man by the name of Kizza Besigye had abruptly and questionably entered into exile in the U.S. and later the country of South Africa. This spawned from The National Resistance Movement (NRM), which was headed by President Yoweri Museveni.

What generated movement behind the movement of the National Resistance Movement was that the core of this party was centrally located in Uganada. As a result, many members and residents of Uganda were disgruntled, and actively established the political group to refute the position and standing of president Yoweri Museveni.

FDC Uganda Flag

Constitutional Changes from Yoweri Museveni Ignite Outrage

The ambition to establish the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda was further ignited when when president Yoweri Museveni made changes to the nation's constitution, enabling him to retain his presidency for a third year running. The actions taken by Yoweri Museveni caused and outrage and angered a number of veterans of the National Resistance Movement, particularly those members who had remained in Movement with the hopes of taking over the position of Yoweri Museveni after his term expired.

The changes made to Uganda's constitution by Yoweri Museveni were even criticized by some of his closest counterparts, such as Eriya Kategaya. He was viewed and honored by many members of the National Resistance Movement as the secondary chain of command in the NRM/NRA hierarchy. Regardless of the strong opposition by Kategaya and other authority figures of the National Resistance Movement, Museveni was not bothered by the disagreements and had firmly established his leadership position in the NRM.

The FDC of Uganda Gain Strength

The Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda was strengthened by the opposition of president Yoweri Museveni. When Kizza Besigye was able to return to his homeland of Uganda, the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda had gained notable strength and support, even among those individuals within the higher ranks of the National Resistance Movement. This empowered level of support prompted Yoweri Museveni to place Kizza Besigye under arrest.

Even though many individuals at that time saw it highly doubtful that Kizza Besigye could defeat Yoweri Museveni in the next election, the new-found support from authoritative members of the National Resistance Movement (currently now known as the Uganda Peoples Defence Force) prompted a significant divide within the army.

The fact of the matter was that the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda had now acquired several ex-commanders of the Nation Resistance Movement, including the NRM's Mugisha Muntu - the former army commander of the Movement. Also compounding the situation and empowering the strength of the FDC of Uganda was that many of the new FDC supporters were once important politicians from the same region in Uganda as Yoweri Museveni. As a result, the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda was able to incur great levels of support from Museveni's own territory.

Besigye' Arrest Fuels More Attention Toward the FDC

The arrest of Kizza Besigye was considered a political outrage among many members and residents, which fueled greater attention to the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda. Conversely, the FDC of Uganda slowly started to suffer as a result of its growth and success. In short order, Yoweri Museveni's past unforgiving nature intimidated many individuals of the FDC side.

Several former members of the National Resistance Movement were very hesitant to publicly refute or criticize president Yoweri Museveni. Prominent politicians, such as the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda's leader at the time, Erya Kategaya, was tentative and conservative in their standing.

Another element that was holding-up the radical movement behind the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda was that the government had established significant restrictions on Kizza Besigye's capabilities to establish a national campaign. Although the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda was highly popular and supported in the urban areas of Uganda (such as Kampala - the capitol city of Uganda) the limited nature of the campaign failed to reach the majority of the coutry's population which is in rural areas. On the opposing side, the National Resistance Movement had invested a large amount of its resources campaigning in these rural areas.

Fortunately for the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda, both Besigye and the FDC were well-known and supported in the northern territories of the country where a great deal of the population had suffered for almost 20 years of war and conflict between the Lord's Resistance Army and the government. The powerful grievances experienced by these Ugandans of the northern territory made these individuals feel abandoned by the Museveni-backed government.

Overcoming the Obstacles & Taking Victory

With all obstacles overcome by the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda, the FDC achieved victory of the Nation Resistance Movement and won over 30% of votes made by Ugandans. This was a significant achievement for the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda, as the party was just over one year old.

More About the Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda

The background behind the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) stems from a rich history of political turmoil and a need for change in Uganda. The NRM, together with its military branch known as the National Resistance Army, successfully battled its way to Uganda political power in 1986. Amidst the time of the war, Yoweri Museveni established a powerful military presence and led the NRM to become a superior political organization for the country. The turn of events resulted in what would become the Forum for Democratic Change, or Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda.

Moral of the Story

In today’s world, many political parties and governments strive to meet the best interests of certain groups, whether those groups have righteous intentions or not. Many groups are simply trying to increase rankings or status among neighboring countries, whereas other parties have more righteous intentions, such as promoting greater health and wellness amongst their people. The Forum for Democratic Change of Uganda is interesting example of military and political turmoil that offers a rich history we can all learn from.