KAMPALA — The US embassy in Kampala has cautioned its citizens agaisnt travelling to Uganda putting it at level 3 which states that ”reconsider travelling”.
This literally means your “traveling to Uganda must be essential otherwise reconsider scheduling it for the future”.
This was after National Unity Platform president Robert Kyagulanyi, better known as Bobi Wine, called on Ugandans to take to the streets to protest January’s election results and what he calls the oppressive government of President Yoweri Museveni.
Mr. Wine started by highlighting human rights violations and election irregularities before, during and after the January 14 vote.
He said these include arrests and detention of NUP members, torture and brutality used against arrested Ugandans, and the refusal by the Supreme Court to accept over 200 affidavits which Wine says contained critical evidence to prove election fraud against Museveni.
It is for these reasons that Mr. Wine called on Ugandans to come out and protest.
“I call upon you to rise up peacefully, unarmed and demonstrate against a regime that has oppressed us,” he said to applause. “They’ve oppressed us, exploited us and turned into slaves in our own country. The women, whose sons are missing, the Ugandans who voted and your results were short-changed, come out and peacefully demonstrate against that impunity,” he said.
Next to Mr. Wine, as he addressed the media, were stacks of files he says were declaration forms proving he won the election. According to Wine, the forms show the NUP won the election with 54% of the vote, compared to the 35% allocated to him by the Electoral Commission.
In addition to the alleged election fraud, Wine said the protests will be premised on three key demands.
“We demand that General Museveni immediately puts an end to the abduction and kidnap of our people who are taken away every day. We demand that General Museveni releases all political prisoners with immediate effect. And finally, we are demanding that General Museveni immediately stops trying civilians in military courts,” Mr. Wine said.
In response to the call for protests, police have put all officers on standby telling them to enhance their visibility, enforce an ongoing curfew and set up checkpoints to monitor people’s movements, especially the youth.
Lucas Owoyesigire, the Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson, said the gatherings would be illegal and that its participants would be dealt with appropriately.
“The organizers of these illegal demonstrations are mobilizing the public using social media and leaflets with wordings that read, “Time is now, join the nationwide protests.” We will not at any time hesitate to arrest and charge in courts of law anyone who will be found participating in these illegal activities,” Owoyesigire said.