Museveni: Ugandan strongman who has graced three regime changes in Kenya
Uganda’s long-serving President, Yoweri Museveni, holds the distinction of having witnessed the transfer of power in Kenya on three occasions during the 36 years that he has been president.
During that period, Daniel Arap Moi, Mwai Kibaki (both deceased) and most recently Uhuru Kenyatta have all gone into retirement with President Museveni still going strong.
In 2003, President Museveni was among dignitaries present as Kibaki took over the reins from Moi, who had been in office for 24 years. Kenya’s third president was sworn in on a wheelchair after suffering a serious road accident weeks earlier during the campaigns.
President Museveni, who at the time was 58 years old, in his speech praised Kenya’s democracy.
“It’s about shift. You do one shift then give another one person according to the constitution. It is something easy, just like how our brothers have shown us today,” Museveni said.
Ten years later, Museveni was back in Nairobi to witness President Kenyatta’s inauguration as Mr Kibaki’s two-term tenure of office came to an end.
In 2017, during Mr Kenyatta’s swearing in ceremony for a second term, President Museveni again thanked Kenyans for holding peaceful elections.
“I urge Kenyans to remember four important things. First peace, social prosperity, economic growth and lastly politics. Do not only think of politics and forget the other three,” he said.
On Tuesday, President Museveni yet again arrived in Nairobi for the inauguration of his new-found friend President William Ruto, who he said he has met on several occasions in Kampala.
President Museveni also said he knew President Ruto as practical person, adding that he is confident Kenya’s new head of state would deliver.
President Museveni, who was introduced by the newly-sworn in President first as “the father of our region”, said that whenever he has been following the election debates, none of the politicians has been fronting the idea of East African integration but rather they concentrated on the development of Kenya alone.
“According to my 60 years of experience, I would advise Africans to know that prosperity comes from wealth creation. I will work together with Ruto to develop our region. The brotherhood between Kenya and Uganda will continue to grow,” he said.