Uganda: NUP instructs police forces to release their supporters

National Unity Platform (NUP) party spokesperson, Joel Ssenyonyi [Image: @joelssenyonyi/Twitter]
Uganda—The Opposition National Unity Platform (NUP) party has said they want all their supporters detained in different cells across the country be released unconditionally.

Mr.Joel Ssenyonyi, the party spokesperson, told journalists yesterday that four of their party leaders were arrested in Kasese district last week as they conducted a grass-root meeting and were charged with treason.

“We know that President Museveni is targeting us, other parties are busy moving around the country holding meetings. Why would security target us and yet we are a fully registered political party in eth country?” Mr. Ssenyonyi said.

On Tuesday last week, the police in Kasese District arrested the five NUP members from Kilembe Quarters in Kasese Town for allegedly holding an illegal meeting.

The five are Mr. Bryans Basisa, the NUP chairperson for Kasese district: Jeff Bwambaele, the party coordinator for Bundibugyo; Sunday Tonozo from Ntoroko District; Mr. Oniz Kule, the NUP coordinator for Hima Town Council; and Mr. Isaac Bwabale, a party member.

Mr Ismail Kaawo, the acting Rwenzori east police spokesperson, said they have received information that the five were holding an illegal meeting.

Yesterday Ssenyonyi said the government was arresting their members in a bid to frame them over treason and other capital offenses in line with President Museveni’s proposal on scrapping bail and bond for some suspects.

“They are bringing all kinds of capital offenses to make sure that our leaders are not released. We shall continue to demand that these senseless charges be dropped against our party members,” he said.

Since the run-up to the 2021 general election, several supporters of NUP have been arrested, with some yet to be released.

In the same press conference, Ssenyonyi accused police officers of starting a smear campaign after the force claimed that the opposition party is planning country-wide protests.