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 Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga has warned against using the Covid-19 pandemic to violate different human rights during the ongoing election campaigns.
Kadaga made the statement during the Thursday afternoon plenary session in which legislators took to the floor to condemn arrests of different political players and subsequent violence and killings in protests across the country.
The evening traffic jam that normally paralyzes the city and its suburbs was today also conspicuously absent. Like yesterday, in all the places that URN reporters visited, there were no traffic police officers on the roads.
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.
The operation follows morning spontaneous protests in the area condemning the arrest of National Unity Platform presidential flag bearer Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu who was arrested while on his campaign trail in Luuka district on Wednesday afternoon.
The Chairman Richard Mutyaba, 45, also the Head of Laity at Kasaala Catholic Church was shot at around 8 p.m. on Wednesday while trying to calm the crowds that lit a fire at Kasaala trading centre, about two miles from Luwero town along the Kampala-Gulu highway.
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.