Uganda Peoples Congress
Plot 8-10 Kampala Road, Uganda House,
P. O. Box 9206, Kampala
Fake rebel groups
08 November 2006
CREATION OF FAKE REBEL GROUPS TO FRAME OPPOSITION MEMBERS IS A RED WARNING LIGHT FOR THE COMMONWEALTH
- The Uganda Peoples Congress would like to express its outrage at the behavior of the government of Uganda and state security agencies for harassing, intimidating and framing members of the opposition political parties especially UPC members for allegedly engaging in criminal activities.
- This has come in the wake of increased insecurity in Karamoja Sub region, the unresolved LRA negotiations in Juba, the just released report of the Uganda Human Rights Commission coupled with several other reports of human rights organizations implicating the government security agencies in gross human rights abuses across the country.
- The waves of harassment and intimidation are not limited to opposition members only but extend to civil society organizations, trade unions, media, intellectuals, activists, students and artists. We urge all the categories of groups mentioned to stand firm for the cause of freedom. To our artists, much as your creativity and innovativeness have been suppressed and suffocated, this should not discourage you from producing plays and songs highlighting the true picture of our country. We call upon our artist to emulate their counterparts in South Africa during the apartheid period where musicians and play producers defied the regime and unleashed their potential by producing plays and songs depicting the true picture of that country which woke up the population about the reality of their situation.
- We condemn in the strongest term the arbitrary arrest, torture and detention without trial of Mr.Nassuru Ogwang and his wife Mrs. Faridah Ogwang. Mr.Nassuru Ogwang the Lira UPC District Chairman and his wife were arrested and detained for allegedly illegally possessing a Sub machine gun and magazines. The greater outrage is that Mr.Nassuru was arrested on Thursday night at 10:00PM by Gombolola Lira Internal Security Officer one Agasaki. If the authorities had reason to suspect this family they should have:
- Used the police to effect the arrest
- Carried the arrest during the day
- Involved the local council authorities of the area during the process since Nassuru is a high profile political leader within the District.
- These arrests are not accidental but are a well calculated move by the NRM government operatives to implicate the opposition members in imaginary rebel groups created by the government to destroy the credibility of political organizations. The NRM government operatives are professional manufacturers of rebel groups and mafia gangsters as evidenced by the creation of the Force Obote Back Again (FOBA), the National Democratic Alliance, Holy Spirit Movement 11 led by Sarah Nabukonde in Mbale, Peoples Redemption Army (PRA) and now the Uganda Freedom Front.
- The timing of the arrest and creation of this imaginary rebel groups, the Uganda Freedom Front, exposes the NRM hidden agenda to crackdown on the opposition at the time when the Commonwealth team has finished its verification of Uganda's capacity to host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference. This dubious and notorious agenda are:
- Arrest of opposition activists before Commonwealth Conference in 2007 to maintain a false image that all is well in the country to our expected visitors and therefore ensures President Museveni chairmanship after the CHOGM in Kampala.
- To have ineffective and weak opposition parties who only exist on paper in our law books and during election years, without capacity to organize and mobilize the people.
- To generate fear in the population by arresting citizens indiscriminately on grounds that, they want to disrupt the commonwealth meeting due in 2007 through creations of this imaginary rebel group called Uganda Freedom Front.
- To cripple the entire democratization process so that we revert to single party rule. President Museveni was forced to open up political space in his own words by donors and investors. He does not believe in genuine functional multiparty democracy where there is true competition on a level playing field, that's why his government has refused to operationalize article 72 of the constitution to regulate and finance parties.
- The NRM government should be the last to implicate UPC members in rebel activities owing to our historical track record in this country.
- UPC brought independence through negotiations without shedding innocent blood of Ugandans.
- We fought for the restoration of Multiparty democracy in Uganda politically and through courts of laws.
- UPC consistently has advocated for the resolution of the Northern Conflict using peaceful means.
- We have demanded for a national dialogue, the setting up of an Independent Truth and National Reconciliation Commission (ITNRC) which eventually would culminate in a National Conference to chart a way forward for our country.
- UPC is currently participating in Inter Party Committee dialogue, a forum to build confidence and national trust to open a way to solve our country's problems. The Museveni Government is undermining this process.
- On the other hand, NRM shot its way to power spilling innocent blood in Luwero and it has maintained itself in power for the last 20years through more violence, intimidation, wars(internal and external) and more bloodshed.
As a credible and viable opposition, we would like to reiterate our commitment to national peace, stability and Unity as we continue to engage the government in a civil manner. The burden is on the NRM government to fully transform itself from a quasi military government to a civilian one that respects the rule of law, freedom and civil liberties of individuals and groups so as to meet the democratic standards set by the commonwealth secretariat and qualify to host CHOGM 2007 in the interest of our nation.
For God and my Country
Mama Miria Kalule Obote
President, Uganda Peoples Congress