Hundreds of members of parliament from the ruling party National Resistance Movement are backing President Yoweri Museveni’s attempt to win another term, according to a resolution adopted at their ongoing meeting late Sunday.
A victory at the next election, in 2021, could extend the Museveni’s rule to 40 years, one of the longest reigns in Africa.
A key committee of the NRM also resolved last month to back Museveni for another term. The party’s delegates will make their final decision at a conference due at the end of this year.
By securing the support of members of parliament, an important segment of his party’s delegates, Museveni came closer to securing the party’s nomination.
The NRM lawmakers agreed to “strongly recommend to the membership of the NRM, our national leadership organs, the continuation in leadership of both state and party up to 2021 and beyond – our beloved leader, General Yoweri K. Museveni.
This cannot be the point to let go of our visionary and unifier.”
Museveni’s government has changed Uganda’s constitution twice to allow him to extend his rule. In 2005, it removed a two-term limit on the presidency. Twelve years later, it voted to scrap an age limit of 75. The cap would have made Museveni ineligible to stand at the next election.
Museveni has himself Monday said he intends to stand, as he was widely expected to, noting that it was “an opportunity to add more steps to our mission-driven journey to make our country sustainably invulnerable.”
“I am therefore humbled by your confidence in me and since I am still very able, I’m sure that together, we shall in the coming years finally deliver an economy that can sustainably deliver jobs to our young people,” he said.