O 12º Cromo

General Idi Amin Dada Oumee (May 17, 1928? - August 16, 2003) was the military dictator of Uganda from January 25, 1971, to April 13, 1979.

Idi Amin was born in the Kakwa tribe, near Koboko in the West Nile Arua district. The year is not known, due to a lack of birth records (sources suggest anything from 1923 to 1928). Some sources suggest he may have celebrated his birthday on January 1. He was brought up by his mother, who was thought to be a witch doctor, and received little formal education.

Amin took tribalism, a long-standing problem in Uganda, to its extreme by ordering the persecution of Acholi, Lango, and other tribes. There are reports of the tortures and murders of 100,000 to 300,000 Ugandans during Amin's presidency.

Amin fled to exile, first in Libya, where sources are divided on whether he remained until December 1979, or 1989, before finding final asylum in Saudi Arabia. He opened a bank account in Jeddah in 1979, and resided there with his four wives until his death, subsisting on a government stipend. The new Ugandan government chose to keep him exiled, saying that Amin would face war crimes charges if he ever returned.

On July 20, 2003, his favorite wife reported that he was near death in a coma at the King Faisal specialist hospital in Jeddah. She pleaded with Uganda's president Yoweri Museveni that he might return to die in Uganda. The reply was that if he returned, he would have to "answer for his sins". Idi Amin died in Saudi Arabia on August 16, 2003, and was buried in Jeddah.

On August 17, 2003 David Owen told an interviewer for BBC Radio 4 that while he was British Foreign Secretary (1977-1979) he had suggested to have Amin assassinated to end his regime of terror. His idea was directly rejected. Owen said "Amin's regime was the worst of all. It's a shame that we allowed him to keep in power for so long".

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