Drama, Contradictions Surround Mabirizi\'s Alleged Kidnap

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Presidential candidate, Joseph Elton Mabirizi says he was kidnapped by six armed men who roughed him up and dropped him in a bush. Police however says there was no kidnap.
Presidential candidate, Joseph Mabirizi

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Drama and contradiction surrounds the alleged kidnapping of independent presidential candidate, Joseph Elton Mabirizi.

Mabirizi, who is still making a statement at Jinja Central Police Station claims he was kidnapped by six armed men, who dumped him in Namasoga bush in Iganga, along the Iganga-Jinja highway.

The LC 1 chairman for Bulanga Center, Paul Kapalaga, who first saw the presidential candidate in the bush, raised an alarm that attracted locals to the scene.

“I was moving towards the trading center when I saw someone trying to crawl out of the bush, and I suspected he could be in danger,” Kapalaga said.

Kapalaga said Mabirizi had mud on his body, and he could not walk or stand. Kapalaga then called the District Police Commander of Iganga, Vincent Mwesigye, who rushed to the scene. 

Mabirizi however refused to board the police pick-up that was to take him to the Iganga Police Station to make a statement.

He was supported by locals who had gathered. Police was forced to shoot in the air to disperse a group of people who wanted to block them from taking Mabirizi.

Another independent presidential candidate, Maureen Kyalya Walube, arrived at the scene and asked Mabirizi, to board her vehicle so that he could be taken instead to Jinja Police Station, to record a statement with police.

But the Iganga district police commander Iganga, Vincent Mwesigye, insisted Mabirizi uses the police vehicle he had come with. Kyalya then slapped Mwesigye in the face.

Mabirizi later accepted to board the police pick-up and was taken to Jinja Central Police Station together with his escorts, while Kyalya followed them in her car.

Mwesigye says Mabirizi could be having a mental illness and suggested that Mabirizi should be taken to Butabika to establish his state of mind.

According to Mabirizi\'s spokesman, Ronald Ngobi, six armed men stormed Super Kiss Guest House, located at Bulanga trading center at around midnight and took away the presidential candidate. Mabirizi\'s escorts were reportedly occupying a lodge on the opposite side of the road.

This version is however contradicted by the coordinator of the Independent Candidates\' Coalition, Omar Kalinge Nnyago. In a statement, Nyago says Mabirizi was kidnapped and roughed up before being dropped in a small urban settlement at 3:30am. 

Nyago says Mabirizi called the area LC I, who organized to take him back to his hotel.

Police spokesperson, Fred Enanga says there was no kidnap. He says Mabirizi sneaked out of the hotel leaving his security personnel behind, and addressed the media at Namasoga village about his alleged kidnap.

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The Electoral Commission chairman, Dr. Badru Kiggundu says they did not have any information about the said kidnapped and have left the matter to police to investigate.