Idi Amin waits in the wings for his people's call

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The Independent Online
The Independent has obtained this picture, believed to be the first in almost 15 years, taken at Idi Amin's bolthole in Saudi Arabia.

His Excellency, self-styled Field Marshal and Life President of Uganda, the holder of the CBE (Conqueror of the British Empire) given to him, he says, by a grateful nation, waits the call to return once the "misunderstanding" which led to to his overthrow is cleared up. The outside world may see his eight-year reign as setting a new low in the abuse of human rights, murderous injustice, and grand larceny of state treasury, but at his villa in the Red Sea port of Jeddah, Amin is convinced his people still love him.

He has been living there, courtesy of the Saudi government, since being airlifted out of Uganda with two wives and a dozen children by the Libyans in l979. He has since been joined by some 20 more children, plus hangers on.

Most of the money the former president is reported to have stolen from Uganda's coffers have gone, but the Saudi government gives him an allowance.

President Yoweri Musevini, in the meantime, has been campaigning to get Asians kicked out by Amin to return to Uganda and help regenerate the economy. He will be visiting a Hindu temple in Neasden, North London, on 23 October to meet some of those expelled and their British-born descendants.