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M7 SALUTES PRESIDENT MOI FOR BACKING HIS NRA WAR

By Mulengera Reporters

Uganda’s president Yoweri Museveni has described departed former Kenyan leader Daniel Toroitich Arap Moi as an African icon. Moi passed on at Nairobi Hospital early Tuesday. He was aged 95. In his condolence message issued on Tuesday, Museveni said he was saddened at the passing of Moi, the second and longest-serving president of post-colonial Kenya. Revealing when he first met him, Museveni described Moi’s demise as a great loss to the continent.

“I first met Mzee Moi in 1979 after the defeat of [former president Idi] Amin,” recalled Museveni. “It is no doubt that Kenya, East Africa and the entire continent has lost a great leader.” The president praised Moi for being “an active East African” who “supported the East African Community and its integration.” Just like Speaker Kadaga had done earlier, Museveni attributed the revival of the East African Community (EAC) to himself, Moi and Tanzania’s Hassan Mwinyi.

Comprising six countries of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda, the EAC collapsed in 1977, just a decade after it was founded in 1967. It would later be revived in 2000, at a time Moi was President of Kenya.

MOI AND & STRUGGLE

Museveni further paid tribute to Moi for playing a “critical” role in Uganda’s National Resistance Army (NRA) liberation war that propelled him to power in 1986. “Later, when we waged the Liberation Struggle, he was critical and we kept him abreast of our struggle,” said Museveni many of whose external wing comrades based their fundraising operations in Nairobi where Moi allowed them chance to freely operate.

He also praised the fallen Kenyan leader for his mediation efforts in the 1985 Peace Talks that happened between Tito Okello Lutwa’s Uganda Military Council and his own NRA rebel army. Moi chaired the talks in the Kenyan capital Nairobi. The result was a peace deal signed at Kenyatta Centre in Nairobi on December 17, 1985 after three months of negotiations. In 2010, Museveni awarded Moi with the Nalubaale Medal for his contribution to the political struggle against dictatorship in Uganda. (For comments on this story, reach the editor at 0705579994 or email us at mulengera2040@gmail.com).

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