Synetic Business School wishes all the students of Uganda a very ‘Happy Independence Day’
- Uganda gained independence from Britain in 1962, maintaining its Commonwealth membership. The first post-independence election, held in 1962, was won by an alliance between the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) and Kabaka Yekka (KY). UPC and KY formed the first post-independence government with Milton Obote as executive Prime Minister, the Buganda Kabaka (King) Edward Muteesa II holding the largely ceremonial position of President and William Wilberforce Nadiope, the Kyabazinga (paramount chief) of Busoga, as Vice-President
- After a military coup in 1971, Obote was deposed from power and the dictator Idi Amin seized control of the country. Amin ruled Uganda with the military for the next eight years and carried out mass killings within the country to maintain his rule. An estimated 300,000 Ugandans lost their lives at the hands of his regime, many of them in the north, which he associated with Obote’s loyalists. Aside from his brutalities, he forcibly removed the entrepreneurial Indian minority from Uganda, which left the country’s economy in ruins. Amin’s atrocities were graphically accounted in the 1977 book, A State of Blood, written by one of his former ministers after he fled the country.
- In 1972, with the so-called “Africanization” of Uganda, 580,000 Asian Indians with British passports left Uganda. Approximately 7000 were invited to settle in Canada; however only a limited number accepted the offer, and the 2006 census reported 3300 people of Ugandan origin in Canada. Given the variety of skills and professional background they brought with them, coupled with their initiative and enterprising attitudes, most Ugandans have made steady socioeconomic progress in Canada. They have settled primarily in Ontario (Toronto), BC and Québec.
- Amin’s reign was ended after the Uganda-Tanzania War in 1979, in which Tanzanian forces aided by Ugandan exiles invaded Uganda. This led to the return of Obote, who was deposed again in 1985 by General Tito Okello. Okello ruled for six months until he was deposed. This occurred after the so-called “bush war” by the National Resistance Army (NRA) operating under the leadership of the current president, Yoweri Museveni, and various rebel groups, including the Federal Democratic Movement of Andrew Kayiira, and another belonging to John Nkwaanga. During the Bush War the army carried out mass killings of non-combatants.
- Museveni has been in power since 1986. In the mid- to late 1990s, he was lauded by the West as part of a new generation of African leaders. As president, he has led Uganda in involvement in the civil war in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and other conflicts in the Great Lakes region. He has struggled for years in the civil war against the Lord’s Resistance Army, which has been guilty of numerous crimes against humanity, including child slavery and mass murder. Conflict in northern Uganda has killed thousands and displaced millions.