Addressing journalists on Monday, the party president and former presidential candidate, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, said that the government should either produce before the court all those it is illegally holding because of their political views or unconditionally release them.
The National Unity Platform-NUP, the largest opposition
political party has renewed its call to security organs to release all its
supporters who were picked up in 2020 and 2021 at the height of the
Addressing journalists on Monday, the party president and
former presidential candidate, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, said that the government should either produce before the court all those it is illegally holding because
of their political views or unconditionally release them.
Kyagulanyi’s call came just
hours after some NUP supporters appeared
before the General Court
Martial for updates on the charges
of illegal possession of 13 explosive devices after spending more than
eight months on remand.
Many NUP supporters are being accused of being found with red berets, which the military gazetted as military stores. Kyagulanyi said these arrests were aimed
at weakening their fight against President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s government.
//Cue in; "munzikirize mbajjukize
Cue out…nga mpiso.”//
For his part, Dr Lina Zedriga, NUP deputy
president for northern Uganda said despite what she called political
persecution of their supporters, they remain resolute in their belief against
President Museveni’s government. She said even when some of these people
are held in gazetted prisons, it is very hard to visit
//Cue in; "visiting them is
Cue out…makes isn’t it.”//
Some of the relatives of those who were kidnapped
and have never been seen again asked the government to have mercy on them and
Mary Namuyanja, the wife of Martin Lukwago who was kidnapped from
Bugolobi on November 23, 2020, said that she is finding it very hard to look after her
three children especially paying their fees now that schools have been
reopened. She said she had to hide her husband’s clothes and pictures so that
the children stop asking about him.
//Cue in; "omwami
Cue out…kyetugenda kukola.”//
Dorothy Najjuka, whose husband, Nalumoso Vincent was kidnapped
on December 1 2020, and has never been seen again, said the last year has been the most
challenging in her life. She said even if Nalumoso is not released, at least he
should be taken to court
so that he can defend himself if he committed any crimes.
//Cue in; "naguno guliko
Cue out…butya bwabeerawo.’’//
Reacting to Najjuka’s revelation of hiding her
husband’s paraphernalia, Kyagulanyi said it's imperative that mothers are
truthful to their children on the whereabouts of their fathers as this will help
them understand the kind of danger the country is facing.
//Cue in; "mukyala wange
Cue out…paka paka paka.”//
Ever since the end of the election cycle in
January last year, a number of NUP supporters who had been arrested especially
after the November 2020 riots following the arrest of Kyagulanyi have been
released some without any charge others either on police bond or on court bail.
However, tens if not hundreds of others remain in detention without any charges
being preferred against them.