Uganda's President Museveni appoints son as army chief


KAMPALA – Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni has appointed his son as the military's top commander in a controversial decision.

Many in the country believe Museveni is grooming his eldest child for the presidency.

Uganda President Museveni appoints son as military chief
Image: Associated Press

What's behind the decision?

The decision was announced by the Defense Ministry late on Thursday. In another announcement, two of Museveni's son's closest advisors were also given ministerial posts in a reshuffle of government ministers.

The 49-year-old Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba — whose social media outbursts have sparked diplomatic uproars — has been holding rallies around the country of late, violating a law that bars serving military officials from engaging in partisan politics.

Kainerugaba, however, says his activities are non-partisan and aimed at boosting patriotism. He recently launched an activist group called the Patriotic League of Uganda.

President Museveni, who is 79, first took power by force in 1986 and has been elected six times since. He has not said when he will retire.

The president currently has no rivals within the ruling National Resistance Movement party, leading many to believe the military will have a say in choosing his successor.

Kainerugaba, on the other hand, joined the army in the late 1990s and his meteoric rise to the top of the armed forces has been controversial. Critics have dubbed it the "Muhoozi Project" to prepare him for the presidency.

Uganda's next presidential election is slated for 2026. 

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