According to Amuriat, for past 10 days of the campaign trail, his entourage has suffered and severally gotten stuck in the mud due to the appalling state of roads in the countryside due to poor maintenance by the ruling National Resistance Movement government compounded by heavy rains.
Tensions ensured after Amuriat’s entourage led by Michael Lakony, the Amuru District LC 5 Chairperson stormed the Town Council to address enthusiastic supporters but police swung into action and blocked them.
The most affected areas include Mengo, Rubaga, Kansanga, Mpererwe, Kasangati, Gayaza. Where costs ranged between 3000 to 4000 shillings but because of the riots the taxis are transporting passengers at a cost between 5000 to 7000 shillings. Other places are from Kampala to Kireka, Bweyogerere and Mukono, Nsangi, Busega, Bwaise, Kawempe where the fare has increased by 1000 shillings or more from the usual prices.
Trouble for Amuriat started when his entourage from Kitgum District dodged security to address a rally in neighbouring Omoro District where he was instead expected on Thursday. Earlier, he addressed a rally in Kitgum on a day he was expected to be in Lamwo.
The most affected areas are Nakasero, Kisekka and St Balikuddembe markets, Usafi, New taxi Parks, Namayiba Bus Terminal and Mengo Kisenyi. More Arcades have also been closed and people ordered to go back home as the army and police patrol the roads.
On Wednesday, the officers were teargassed by dozens of Field Force Police-FFP personnel from Gulu Central Police Station while struggling to quell down rowdy FDC supporters who were holding a procession through Gulu City. The FFP officers threw teargas at the presidential candidate as members of his security detail tried to shield him.
The National Coordinator CCEDU Charity Ahimbisibwe says that the best way forward is to suspend campaigns. Ahimbisibwe notes this is the proper course of action if violation of COVID-19 guidelines is punished with death by the security forces.
Mao says the NRM presidential candidate incumbent president Yoweri Museveni is only pretending to be adhering to the COVID rules. Mao argues that Museveni is permitting hooligans of NRM supporters who are mobilized by the likes of Bebe Cool to violate the rules.