Uganda became independent in 1962. Under the rule of presidents, Idi Amin and Milton Obote from the 1960s to the 1980s, it experienced civil strife and economic stagnation and counted among Africa’s failed states.
Under the National Resistance Movement (NRM) since 1986, it came to be seen as a remarkable success story (Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars 2005). More recently, however, it has been characterized in some quarters as a fragile state (USAID 2005), and in others as an authoritarian “neo-patrimonial” state under the personal rule of a president who maintains his authority through distribution of patronage and prebends, intimidation, and force (Barkan et al. 2004).