Know Your Leader: Meet Gen. Mugisha Muntu

By Moses Sentamu

Gregory Mugisha Muntuyera, mostly known as Mugisha Muntu (born October 1958), is a politician and retired military officer.He is the current President of the Alliance for National Transformation (ANT), a political party he founded in March 2019.

He previously Served as President of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC),  from 2012 to 2017.In September 2018, General Muntu parted ways with the FDC. He served as the Army Commander , from 1980 to 1998.When the NRA was renamed (UPDF).

Mugisha Muntu was born in October 1958 at Kitunga village in present-day Ntungamo District, Ankole sub-region, Western Uganda,  to Enock Ruzima Muntuyera and Aida Matama Muntuyera.He had an affluent childhood as his father was a strong government functionary and close friend of Ugandan Leader Milton Obote.

He attended Mbarara Junior School, Kitunga Primary School and Kitunga High School (Kitunga High School was later renamed Muntuyera High School in memory of his father, by Obote).Muntu attended Makerere College School and subsequently went on to graduate in political science from Makerere University, where he was Deputy President of students union.

Muntu joined the guerrilla of NRA of Yoweri Musevenithe day he completed his university exams, to the chagrin of his family and President Obote, who considered him a son.

Early into the rebellion he was shot in the chest but survived after receivinv treatment in Kampala.Later he emerged as the head of Military Intelligence after the NRA victory in 1986.In military intelligence he had under his command personalities like Paul Kagame, who would later become the President of Rwanda.

Muntu underwent further military training in Russia before becoming a division commander in Nothern Uganda.He rose to the rank of Major General within the UPDF. His rapid Promotion did not go unnoticed by other senior officers in the Ugandan military.

He was later to serve as Commander of the UPDF.That post was later renamed Chief of Defense Forces.As army chief , he oversaw the demobilisation of many sections of the army.

Observers have attributed Maj.Gen.Muntu’s quick ascension to the pinnacle of the NRA/UPDF to his reputation as an incorruptible and and Loyal officer to the President of Uganda.

This Loyalty was rewarded by the support of the President during Muntu’s many quarrels with sections of the army which accused him of trying to alienate them.Prominent among these were the so-called “uneducated” officers,led by General Major James Kazini.Muntu was accused of creating a schism within the army by showing Preferential treatment to educated officers while side lining those he considered uneducated.

Muntu was a member of the constituent Assembly (1994-1995) and parliamentarian.After disagreeing to Museveni’s approach to politics and the military, he was removed from the army command and appointed as a minister, a position he politely turned down.

In November 2001, he was selected by the members of the Ugandan Parliament to serve as one of the nine Ugandan representatives to the East African Legislative Assembly.

Since 1992 he was married to Julia Kakonge Muntu.They are the parents of one son, born 1993, and one daughter, born in 1996.

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