President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the Chief Trekker of the Africa Kwetu 195km walk that began over the weekend, is still standing strong after five days of the trek with two more to go.
President Museveni, last night, camped at the late Ssetuba’s home, in Kagogo. The late is a veteran war hero whom the President described as kind-hearted because he offered him and other liberation fighters shelter during the bush war. He spoke to the family and laid a wreath on his grave. The late Ssetuba was killed after enemy forces heard that he was sheltering rebels.
“We were coming from Lwamata to Matugga. We stayed here and slept at his home and then left for Matugga the next day. The first time we passed here, nobody knew. After we got ammunition, we stayed here in the mountains and news came out that we were here in these hills near his home. The Tanzanians heard about it, came and killed him,” President Museveni is quoted saying.
Bukomero, one of the areas on the route, according to President Museveni, is where Security Minister Gen. Elly Tumwine organized one of their first ambushes that saw a Tanzanian lorry blasted. “It was also at this place that Gen. Tumwine lost an eye during the war.” President Museveni said.
“It was from Bukomero that we abandoned the vehicles and walked 19 miles from here to Kaginzi because we didn’t want to be seen by the enemy.” Museveni further added.
President Museveni went on to further reveal that the Trek was one of the hardest he had ever made throughout the bush war. He said he lacked a blanket and tooth brush to use on the journey and that the situation was almost unbearable.
“I tried to use the fire to warm myself to sleep but it couldn’t help. I would get warm on one side and feeI cold on the other side. I then got a very smelly blanket but at the time it was the sweet smelly blanket. For toothbrush, there was a son of Dr. Sebuliba who had studied at Makerere. He donated to me his own tooth brush and I had to boil it and sterilize it,” he said.
While on the Trek, Museveni made several stops along the way, sensitizing the populace to work hard and try to increase their household income and returns. He emphasized that life is not a straight line and to be able to earn from it, one had to work extra hard.
“Tarmac roads cannot get you out poverty; otherwise this place would have no poor people. I also see electricity poles but they still won’t get you out of poverty because you need money to pay for the bills. Government has done its part of developing infrastructure but you also must do your part of fighting poverty,” he explained.