chapter  12
Executive Dominance and Elite Corruption in Uganda
Pages 11

President Museveni has ruled Uganda with virtual impunity since the late 1980s. Executive abuse and corruption in state decision-making have been pervasive. Public resources have been distributed to senior state and business elites to maintain their personal allegiance to the president and consolidate the regime in power. A manipulative president has also rendered anti-corruption and accountability institutions seeking to expose government wrongdoing ineffective. Yet these same institutions have been weakened by internal corruption as many MPs and public officials have solicited bribes in carrying out their work. Moreover, international donors have supported a corrupt and semi-authoritarian regime seeking to perpetuate itself in power, while opposition parties and civil society associations have been too weak politically to push for democratization and good governance. This chapter summarizes these various arguments made in our Uganda case study. It also revisits these arguments in the context of recent calls for changes in Uganda’s governance and political leadership. These calls are emerging from within the ruling party, and we discuss the difficulties of loosening the personal hold on power of an entrenched and unchecked president and undermining the political basis of executive corruption.