Factoid of the Day

Posting is slow as I read and digest as much about Uganda’s recent history as I’m able to.

For now, one factoid that left me absolutely gobsmacked. I’m sure it’s something everybody who follows these things already knows, but it stopped me in my tracks.


During the Luwero Bush War of the 1980s – the one that brought Yoweri Museveni to power – Museveni’s counter-intelligence chief was…Paul Kagame.

How has nobody made a movie about this yet?!

Here’s more from the sensational 2009 Observer.ug article reporting this:

[Kagame] had his own bicycle, Uzi gun and operational fund. He moved freely from unit to unit spying on his colleagues.

It was therefore not surprising that when Sam Magara, one of the few Monduli-trained officers in the group reportedly hatched a plan to oust Museveni, the CHC moved faster than them—thanks to Kagame’s information.

Veterans say that Museveni trusted Kagame more than Tinyefuza who, like Sam Magara, is from the Muhinda clan of the Bahima. Museveni is a Musita.

At the height of ethnic polarization in the bush, Museveni appeared to trust fighters of Rwandan origin, such as Kagame, more. That is why, some say, the late Maj. Gen. Fred Rwigyema remained the head of Museveni’s protection unit for a long time.

Although the alleged coup against Museveni had been planned to take place when he was away from the bush (between June -December 1981), the rebel leader got to know about it and was able to suppress it. Veterans tell us, it is Kagame and others who let Museveni in on the secret.

I’d always heard that the Rwandan RPF had gotten a lot of help from Uganda, but I had no idea Museveni and Kagame’s relationship ran this deep. Kagame remained intelligence chief throughout the Bush War and even after Museveni took power. Hell, he was a founding member of Museveni’s National Resistance Army!

I have so much to learn…

One thought on “Factoid of the Day”

  1. If you are catching up on Ugandan and Rwandan history you might like to research further the links between Kagame and Museveni. I hope that my recollection is not unreliable but I think that it was stated somewhere that Museveni is a Tutsi. I just can’t recall where.
    Still Kagame and Museveni go a long way back. The former was an officer in the latter’s army.
    For further reading with great detail on Uganda history you should start as far back as possible. MacKay of Uganda, Scramble for Africa by Pakenham; and always Dowden.

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