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Opposition threatens to boycott parliament

Opposition MPs addressing at parliament

Opposition MPs addressing at parliament

Opposition MPs have resolved to boycott parliamentary sittings as they continue mount pressure to secure the freedom of fellow legislators Allan Ssewanyana (Makindye West) and Muhammad Ssegirinya (Kawempe North).

Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana who are facing murder and terrorism charges got re-arrested soon after being granted bail by the High court. The MPs communicated their position following today's meeting chaired by the leader of the opposition in parliament (LOP), Mathias Mpuuga.

“We condemn the illegal detention of the two MPs and many other Ugandans who are being held for so long without trial,” opposition chief whip John Baptist Nambeshe said, adding that, “We will boycott the plenary sittings of parliament until the due process of the law is followed in the prosecution of our colleagues and other opposition supporters.”

The move, Nambeshe said, is intended to force the government to respect the rule of law.

“Until the two members and other Ugandans who support change who are in incarceration; some in places we don’t know are taken through due process, we shall not go back to parliament and comfortably deliberate on issues when our people are being persecuted,” Nambeshe said.

The development comes a day after opposition MPs stormed out of parliament in protest of what they termed as government’s failure to offer a satisfactory reason for the brutal re-arrest of Ssewanyana and Ssegirinya moments after they had been granted bail.

Ssewanyana was re-arrested last Thursday while Ssegirinya was re-arrested this Monday outside Kigo prison by armed security operatives. Meanwhile, the opposition has also rejected President Museveni’s push to abolish the requirement to grant bail to suspects.

“We want to confirm that we stand by the current provisions in the Constitution. Uganda obligations, internationally and regionally; we are party to the universal declaration of human rights that calls for presumption of innocence, we are a party to the international covenant on civil and political rights. All those obligations mandate us as a country to ensure that we respect the presumption of innocence and by extension, we uphold the right to apply for bail,” Bugiri MP Asuman Basalirwa said.

“We will defend the current constitutional provision that entitles anybody accused of an offence to apply for bail and will therefore not be party to any moves that are intended to remove bail from our law books. The current provisions on bail are sufficient enough to cater for Mr Museveni’s concerns,” he added.

Yesterday Tuesday, Museveni met NRM MPs to sell to them his idea of scrapping the constitutional provision on bail which Basalirwa warned is likely to cast the NRM government in bad light.

“The NRM government will go into history as the first government in the whole world to abolish bail. Not even the Taliban [in Afghanistan], not even the military regime in North Korea or in Myanmar abolished bail, so, they [NRM] will be the first should they pursue this matter to its conclusion. If Museveni wants to be the champion of being unique in that respect, we will not follow him in that uniqueness,” Basalirwa said.

Comments

+1 #1 Zaitun 2021-09-29 17:31
It is high time Ugandans came together and adressed the question of innocent Ugandans suffering in unknown houses under the pretext that they have done this and that.

We all know quite well those who clap their hands to thank Museveni and Co are doing so out of fear, and to show allegience just as a means to get money out of nothing.

Time has come for us Ugandans to come together and drive these bandits out of office and take them to International courts so that they answer for the rampant killings they been committing all over the country since 1970s.

Uganda for them, is no man's land and a grave yard that will permit them to have access to free land, and natural resources for their kins, friends, and that will permit them to have their program of reconstituting a hamite territory stretching from DRC to Ethiopia as was already designed with the help of Bill Clinton, Tony Blaire; a protectorate under UK and USA.

Time is here for us to act now or never!!
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0 #2 kabayekka 2021-09-29 20:25
It is not the Parliament of Uganda that is sent in its Sergeant with armaments to grab twice the two members of Parliament like chicken thieves and to take them in a hidden house somewhere!

Much of the public in this country knows very well the political games being played about by all those in authority.

Wait until when one hears that the wages of all the members of parliament who have boycotted the house have not been paid out!
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0 #3 Sekabaka 2021-09-29 20:27
Will they boycott their salaries and iPads and cars too or is this one of those silly “solidarity” stunts?
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+1 #4 Kaede 2021-09-29 21:24
I urge other regions to support the Central Region on this one.

Dear Soga & Langi (my ethnic affliations) please do the same, and also for that pending land reform bill.
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+1 #5 Jose 2021-09-30 05:08
To flash back a bit

There a bill passed by I k musaazi and grace ibingira. but they ended up being candidates of their own.

That's long ago, there's the famous POMA of mama
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+1 #6 Kaede 2021-09-30 09:28
Thank you to both sides of the Chamber.

Special thanks to the NRM MPs who have shown enough bravey aganst thier Almighty boss.
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