Uganda Elections 2006: Seeking Divine Intervention
Ugandans getting out of Namboole stadium after national prayers.

Uganda Elections 2006: Seeking Divine Intervention

February 14, 2006- National Prayer Day.

By John Isingoma
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First published: February 16, 2006

Ugandans seem to acknowledge that the problems, which are rocking the country today and those to come, are beyond the human efforts and that divine intervention is now needed. This was manifested on February 14, 2006 through the National Prayer Day organized by the born-again Christian community in Kampala.

The prayers themed Repentance and Reconciliation in our Nation was attended by more than 500 people including pastors and some top political leaders of the land who prayed for repentance and reconciliation especially in politics for a new start and cried to God for forgiveness at the Mandela National Stadium, Namboole. They prayed for free and fair elections, honesty to stop corruption, economic transformation, resettlement of the people in IDP camps and reconstruction of Northern Uganda, the rule of law, the stopping bloodshed and violence in all forms among other issues of national concern.

Ruth Birabwa in the opening prayer asked God to bless Uganda and the speakers of the day and censor their words in order to bring about peace, unity and forgiveness in Uganda. Lord let the peace and forgiveness we receive from this place spread to all parts of Uganda and create a difference in the lives of the people, Birabwa prayed.

After the opening prayer, a string of prayers punctuated with music and scripture reading sessions ensued before President Museveni said a humbling prayer.

Dear God our God, I stand here to acknowledge the sovereignty which you entrusted in my hands as the head of the state, I know its not by human power but because of your divine choice. Thank you for the knowledge and understanding you have given me for all this long. I realize that you have given me great favor from you and your people. As your people, we people of Uganda, we have recognized the evil of the present and the past and here we pray for your forgivingness. I pray for your divine power and blessing with each step I take in the next five years as you have always done, prayed the President of Uganda from a written text.

Other prayers
Pastor Deo Musoke prayed for free and fair elections. He begun by asking God to cover Uganda with his blood and bring peaceful elections because Uganda is his country and should not allow it go to the dogs due to election violence and miss handling of the election process. He then asked the audience to raise their hands to join him in prayer, asking God to bless Uganda to exercise sanity and fairness in the 2006 elections.

The pastor said that leadership comes from God and that since God knows the hearts of all men, He should guide Ugandans to choose the right leader to exercise His rule over Uganda.

Musoke prayed for good leaders right from Local Council 1 to the President who are nationalistic, developmental and God fearing. He prayed for president Museveni saying that God should give him another term of office because he has done well and that he is the only leader in the history of Uganda who has acknowledged born-again churches as rightful places of worship. This seemingly confirmed earlier allegations that born-again churches are mobilizing their followers to vote for Museveni.

Then there was Pastor John Bunjo who got to the mike and prayed against the most cancerous problem affecting Uganda today-corruption. He pointed out that Uganda Revenue Authority, Kampala City Council and the Presidents office as the most corrupt offices in Uganda, which need cleaning up as soon as possible if Uganda is to develop.

Bunjo asked God to grant Uganda, leaders of integrity, honesty, and with a nationalistic heart. The pastor prophesized that corrupt officers will not serve in the new government which Ugandans are going to vote in the forthcoming national elections. You will remember that Uganda has featured in many reports as the most corrupt country in Africa, at one time holding the second most corrupt country position in the whole world. Currently, there is a commission of inquiry into the misuse of the Global Fund for HIV/AIDS, Malaria and TB. A number of shocking revelations have already been put to light and Ugandans are waiting to see how the government will respond.

Economic transformation was yet another issue presented to God for his merciful attention. Before Pastor Aloysius Bugingo could start praying for economic transformation, he briefed the audience about the economic status of Uganda. Uganda is among the 20 least developed countries in the world and due to this fact, Ugandans are discriminated against and labeled beggars, educated Bugingo.

Bugingo asked God to bless Ugandans with the spirit of hard work and investment in order to chase poverty with homegrown strategies rather than running to foreigners for help. He then cursed the spirit of war and foolishness, which he said have escalated poverty in the country.

Requests and promises
The leader of the National Prayer and Reconciliation Team, pastor Joseph Serwadda requested the President to set up a trust and reconciliation commission to spearhead reconciliation and forgiveness in Uganda for harmonious existence of all Ugandans. He went further and requested that February 14, 2006 be made a National Day of Prayer because even the world over it is cerebrated as the day of love (valentine).

However, when the President stood to pray for the nation, he instead promised to change the law, which requires born-again churches to register and renew annually with the ministry of internal affairs and promised to direct the ministry to acknowledge them just like other religious groups. The news was received with ululations and cheers from the mammoth crowd.

Pastor Serwadda expressed happiness towards the president for accepting this sensitive repentance prayer and reconciliation event to take place and for attending it in person. Of the 5 presidential candidates in the February 23rd election, only President Museveni attended this national prayer day.

By John Isingoma
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First published: February 16, 2006
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John Isingoma is a member of Ultimate Media Consult (U) Ltd. A social scientist by training, Isingoma is the Executive Secretary at Ultimate Media Consult (U) Ltd and after years training and practice in the media has become a dedicated writer and researcher.