About me.

Andrew M. Mwenda is the founding Managing Editor of The Independent, Uganda’s premier current affairs newsmagazine. One of Foreign Policy magazine 's top 100 Global Thinkers, TED Speaker and Foreign aid Critic

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Heresy about DR Congo’s Mobutu

Why there was never a South Korean but a Congolese miracle

Let us present an alternative history of the world. The year is 1960 and we have two countries - Mexico and France - each with a per capita income of $100. Both countries have emerged from colonial rule, Mexico by neighboring Brazil, and France by Nigeria. Almost 70% of the people of Mexico are peasants; the figure for France is 99%. Both nations are ruled by military strongmen who want to industrialize their countries in order to raise the standard of living of their people.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The trouble with Mbabazi’s candidacy

In challenging Museveni, Mbabazi may have made his boldest political move ever but equally the most fatal one

On Monday Amama Mbabazi declared his intentions to challenge President Yoweri Museveni for the leadership of the NRM and the country. The message launching his campaign was the most mature. He did not make scathing personal attacks on Museveni, accusing him of being a despot and of destroying the country. Instead he positioned his bid as a contest over the country’s future rather than a quarrel over its past. He acknowledged the achievements Uganda has registered over the last 50 years. His message was contrary to the militant and vitriolic rancour his daughters and in-laws have been spewing on social media.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Why Africa should leverage her strength

Our continent needs to focus on its positive attributes and use those to inspire future generations

The definitive clash of wills during the Second World War that paved the way for the defeat of Nazi Germany was the battle of Stalingrad. Soviet leader Josef Stalin had ordered the Red Army to fight to the last man to stop the Germans from taking the city which bore his name. Any retreating soldier would be summarily shot. He sent in Nikita Khrushchev as the political commissar to enforce the order. Khrushchev implemented this order with unparalleled harshness. Propaganda stories in newspapers, television, and motion pictures showed scores of retreating troops being shot.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

African elites and Mzungu worship

Exposing the hidden bias behind our obsession with Western goodness and Africa’s dysfunctions 

The greatest triumph of the colonial state was not the integration of our economies and social/political systems into the international capitalism system. That could have been achieved without colonialism and via free trade. Colonialism’s greatest triumph was the colonisation of our minds. Today we see everything Western through rosy lenses. Conversely we see everything African through lenses tinted with poisonous acid. We are so quick to cheer the good in Western society and blind to its political and social pathologies. We are equally unable to see the boundless goodness in Africa and quick to condemn every dysfunction we imagine.