A group Ugandans in the diaspora particularly living in the United States of America has held a protest against the admission of State Minister of Investment Evelyn Anite at Tufts University, a private research university in the state of Massachusetts.
The group staged a demonstration asking the university and the American government to cancel Anite’s admission, accusing her of corruption and violation of human rights back in Uganda.
Anite, a student of International Relations and Diplomacy at the prestigious Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University was recently granted permission to take leave from Parliament and Cabinet to study in the U.S.
Anite is said to be paying USD 90,000 (342 million Shillings) for the course that is sponsored by the Ugandan Government.
The demonstrators are questioning her admission saying that the United States, as a democracy, should not encourage corrupt government officials to seek refuge in its territory under the guise of undertaking further studies.
Anite who is a staunch supporter of NRM and President Museveni was instrumental in the run up to the removal of the Age limit from the constitution. She is not however known to have been convicted of the crimes she is being accused of by the demonstrators.
Anite was also key in mobilising the NRM caucus to support her move to have President Museveni as the sole candidate ahead of the 2016 presidential elections. This saw former prime minister Amama Mbabazi force to run under a hastily formed political organisation.
The group of Ugandans on Saturday gathered in Medford, Boston for a protest, in which they demanded that Anite’s stay and studies are terminated. The protest that was led by the Common League of the Ugandan Diaspora (CLOUD) lasted more than eight hours.
The held placards with inscriptions challenging the admission and demanding the Tufts University suspends Anite, in public interest. “Anite should join Russian schools, USA is a democracy, not an Autocracy,” read one of the placards. There were several others in the same line, some offensive, some demanding and others recommending action.
Martin Byakuleka, the ClOUD President who also spearheaded the protest says Anite is an enemy of democracy and human rights in Uganda and has no right to attend a free world top school of International Affairs. Byakuleka called for Anite’s discontinuation as an honour for global peace and security.
He says if Tufts University does not listen to their call, they will plan a massive round of demonstration in August. Attempts to speak to the University about the protest were futile, as online contacts were not responded to e by press time.