NAM Summit, an opportunity to rebuke Western imperialism


At the Non-Aligned Summit (NAM), which has kicked off today January 15, in Kampala, Uganda, whose President has consistently advocated for non interference of Western nations in the internal affairs of countries of global South, will assume the Organisation’s chairmanship. President Yoweri Museveni has also, on several occasions, rooted for neutrality of developing countries on global conflicts and matters considered divisional.

To be exact, Uganda continues to receive condemnation from the West since passing the anti-homosexuality law in May 2023. The law, according to Ugandan authorities, prohibits the promotion of the vice deemed to contravene African values. But, the West says it is an abuse of human rights.

The World Bank withdrew funding from the nation, and later, Uganda lost its eligibility for the U.S. African Growth and Opportunity Act, or AGOA.

Through AGOA, some countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Uganda, had duty-free access to the U.S. market for close to 6,000 products.

In response, President Museveni described the decisions as evil tendencies of Western countries toward societies different from them.

He would later say that the West’s oppression takes the form of aggression, looting, enslavement, displacement, ethnic cleansing, colonization, and indirect domination without occupying one’s territory.

NAM comprises 53 countries from Africa, 40 from Asia, 26 from Latin America and the Caribbean, and one from Europe (Belarus). There are 18 countries and 10 international organisations that are observers at NAM. The grouping is second only to the UN in terms of membership of countries, making it one of the largest groupings on the planet.

Hosting key decision makers in all the 120 countries and later lead them for the next 3 years is an opportunity for President Museveni to advance his anti-neocolonialism and self-sustaining agenda. NAM Summit in Kampala ought to be used as a platform to ask the West and its allies to back off developing countries, but instead support them unconditionally to develop.

It should be noted that when Russia launched a Special Military Operation in Ukraine, the U.S and the West imposed severe sanctions on Russia with attempts to isolate it as a ‘punishment’, even without considering its concerns. They further sought support for sanctions from countries around the world, something that many including Uganda, rejected.

President Museveni said Uganda will continue cooperating with Russia, noting that it’s not Kampala’s doctrine to inherit other countries enemies. He said, “When there was the cold war, one day they asked me a question, ‘are you pro-east or pro-west?. … I deal with all other people according to how they relate with my own interests. These people think we are stupid, such a question is idiotic. It is not my job to be pro-east or pro-west, I am pro myself and I deal with people according to the way they deal with me.”

Given those strong views on multilateralism, President Museveni seem to the right right man at the top of NAM under the current circumstances since the organization was mainly formed to strengthen the principles of multilateralism and consolidate the rule of law as well as support the efforts of developing countries in promoting peace and cooperation in the world.

A seemingly sided UN and stronger NAM

Another reason as to why the NAM Summit in Kampala must move fast to call the west to order, are the seeming double standards of the United Nations (UN) in the face of the many aggressions sern in the world. These aggressions and alliances by the self-appointed global policemen have served to fuel the war. It’s this same kind of alliance that even made World Wars 1 and 2 inevitable, according to Daniel Abal, a Ugandan youth.

The United States and its allies, he says, are systematically destroying the system of international law that emerged after World War II, imposing on the world a so-called “rules-based order” – rules established solely by them, exclusively in their own interests, using a wide range of coercive tools, including blackmail, manipulation of public opinion, threats to use force, attempts at an unconstitutional change of power, including by using the mechanisms of international organizations under their control, such as the ICC, the World Bank, the IMF and others.

Special emphasis is placed on purposeful destabilization of the situation in undesirable countries, work on the creation and subsequent maintenance of crisis situations in various regions of the world.

At the same time, NATO has finally taken shape as an instrument of collective aggression of the West.

The United Nations as the global anchor of peace has had little to do. Its double standards, unfair representation (at least for Africa and GIobal South) in the Security Council, and the rather stultified and manipulated negotiations and resolutions have only served to advance the no-good interests of the powerful world policemen who derive great incentives from the existence of wars the world over.

The Global South has always acted as shock absorbers whenever these policemen fuel mayhem. While Africa has been battling with its own peace and security concerns, the actions of the West and the ongoing aggressions have fueled several unconstitutional changes of governnment, notably in Western Africa.

African nations, including the African Union, have had to find themselves
aligned, sometimes even with the godfathers of these instabilities for fear of losing financial and economic support.

Through their proxy, Bretton Woodsinstitutions (the World Bank (WB) and the International Monetary Fund), the West has trapped and usurped the autonomy of several African and Global South Nations.

The trend is worrying, despite the clarity on the tactic being used, our nations have continued to demonstrate an untamed appetite for the consumption of these loans with strings attached all over.

In the current international conditions, the Non-Aligned Movement is acquiring new significance in ensuring global stability and security, equality of rights for independent states defending their national interests, and protecting traditional values.

Uganda unconditionally supports the principles of the Non-Aligned Movement and, as the chairman of the organization for the period from 2023 to 2026, intends to actively contribute to ensuring peace and security by promoting the ideas of non-alignment to military-political blocs, the most dangerous of which is NATO today.

The Writer is. Ugandan Journalist with passion for current African affairs.


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