At least 37 people have been confirmed dead following the Wednesday country wide riots against the arrest of National Unity Platform – NUP presidential candidate Robert Ssentongo Kyagulanyi.
Kyagulanyi was arrested and detained at Nalufeenya after he flouted Covid-19 Standard Operating Procedures as he campaigned in Luuka, Eastern Uganda.
According to the Ministry of Health, a candidate is not allowed to hold a rally with more than 200 people, a directive that Kyagulanyi flouted.
Further reports indicate that over 100 people were injured and are now nursing wounds.
Records at Mulago National Referral Hospital and Uganda Martyrs Hospital Lubaga show that at least 15 people who were injured had gunshot wounds, 20 were unconscious due to teargas, three had injuries from accidents while others complained of pain in different parts of the body after being beaten.
Norbert Mao, the Democratic Party (DP) presidential candidate has denounced violence and pleaded for a peaceful transition of power in Uganda.
Mao said that all voters should stand against the violence that leads to bloodshed and instead embrace a peaceful transition of government from the current leadership of Uganda to a new leadership through the ballots.
He noted that Uganda has not undergone a peaceful handover of power since the overthrow of the governments of Milton Obote and Iddi Amin Dada by coups which led to consequence toppling of power by the National Resistance Army (NRA), now the National Resistance Movement-NRM led by Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
‘’The reason for this election is to see that Uganda witnesses what it has never witnessed before and that is a change of government without bloodshed,’’ Mao noted.
Mao made the statements during his two separate campaigns in Ongako and Palenga town council all in Omoro district on Wednesday.
His statements come at a time when Uganda is witnessing a wave of deadly violence and protests by people loyal to opposition parties and against the ruling NRM government.
Last week, Betty Aol Ocan, the Leader of Opposition in Parliament (LOP) announced that the opposition would go for ‘’Plan B’’ if the election fails.
Last week police reported that more than 40 people were killed, scores injured and more than 300 arrested following protests against the arrest of presidential hopefuls Robert Kyagulanyi and Patrick Oboi Amuriat of the National Unity Platform and Forum for Democratic Change parties respectively.
Lawrence Okidi, an elder from Palenga town council praised Mao for typically living as a true leader of the Democratic Party who believes in a peaceful transition of power.
Betty Kilama, a voter and contender in Omoro district noted that Mao’s love for peace, intelligence and competence makes him deem to be elected the President of Uganda.
Talking about his manifestos, Mao said that he will improve electricity, roads, education in the northern region and also ensure compensation of those who lost their properties to the government.
Mao is seeking election for presidency alongside ten other candidates.
The Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) presidential candidate, Maj. Gen. Mugisha Gregory Muntu has finally opened up on why the police foiled his Kamwenge campaign rally and the reason why he chose to “peacefully withdraw.”
Since the commencement of the campaigns on November 9, Muntu and President Museveni have been known to be the most peaceful candidates, abiding by the set guidelines for conducting campaigns, however, it wasn’t business as usual today in Kamwenge where Police foiled his rally.
His policy, as he has been and continues to preach, is using non-violent and radical means of changing the country leadership as opposed to ‘defiance’ that is always applied by his fellow opposition presidential candidates.
In a statement that he released shortly after the blockade, Muntu admitted that it was their foul for trying to change the campaign venue, after the heavy rains destroyed the initial one.
“As we have done since the start of the campaign season, we headed out to speak with the people in the venue we had earlier in a week before agreed upon with the security agencies. No one anticipated that it would rain as much as it did, making it impossible for us or people to access,” he noted.
“After identifying an alternative place only 100 meters away from the original venue, negotiating with the owner and communicating the same to the public, we headed to the second venue only to be stopped by police,” he added.
He noted that since ANT’s policy is to be reasonable even during unreasonable actions on the side of the state, they engaged police leadership in a civilized, respectable manner with an intention of denying police any chance for injuring his supporters or the general public including himself (Muntu).
“They not only intended to frustrate us, but also cause us to act in the ways that would give them an excuse to cause chaos. This was on top of their intimidating the radio we had booked and duly paid to appear on,” he said.
“While we are confident that we are on the right side of both law and reason, we have chosen not to endanger the lives of our supporters or the general public by escalating the situation,” he added.
Muntu vowed that his ANT will do everything humanly possible to avoid a single life being lost or blood being shed on account of his campaign.
He truth remains, the regime’s days are numbered,” he said.