Police in Kitgum Municipality in Kitgum District Wednesday fired teargas to disperse hundreds of National Unity Platform (NUP) supporters who had gathered to listen to presidential candidate Kyagulanyi Ssentamu Robert alias Bobi Wine’s speech in an unauthorised venue.
NUP supporters had gathered outside Mon-Bunyu market, Alango Ward in Panbwong Division to listen to Bobi Wine, who had resorted to passing his campaign message from the roof of his car after police denied him access to the venues which his team had organized to hold rallies.
Ealier, Kyagulanyi was scheduled to address his supporters at Christ the King playground, Panbwong Division in Kitgum municipality, but the advance team lead by Mr Allan Ssewanyana, was barred from accessing the venue by Rev Fr Raphael Steven Kilama, the second curette of Christ the King Church.
Fr Kilama, demanded the team to produce a formal clearance letter issued by the security authorizing them to hold their rally at the church premises, but the team apparently didn’t have the letter.
He later called the Kitgum Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Mr William Komakech, who said the venue had not been given to NUP party to hold the rally.
After being chased away from there, the NUP team proceeded to Acaki lodge in Alango West Cell in Panbwong Division, where they were also blocked by waiting police officers from accessing the hotel premises.
At this point, Bobi Wine through his robadoba style emerged from his vehicle through the roof to wave to his supporters.
In a dare attempt to address the supporters from the streets, Kyagulanyi’s convoy drove through Pager Crescent, Uhuru Drive, Janani Luwum, and Market lanes attracting huge crowds. Mr Kyagulanyi then briefly told his supporters that when voted President of Uganda, he will address the challenge of youth unemployment and increase the monthly salary of military personnel.
A few moments later, police commanded by Officer in Charge of Operations at Kitgum Central Police Station, Mr Julius Mpande, fired teargas and bullets which forced the NUP supporters to scamper for their lives as they fled the scene to different destinations.
One of the NUP supporters, Mr Samuel Obwoya, said the oppression by security forces will not force them to support the incumbent Mr Museveni, but they will rather continue supporting Mr. Kyagulanyi “NUP is our party, Kyagulanyi is our president, even if we are not allowed to listen to him, we shall vote him,” he said.
Mr William Komakech, the Kitgum Resident District Commissioner, told Fremer Media that NUP officials declined to agree with their supporters who had organized Acaki hotel as the venue to hold the rally, and instead proceeded to the busy town centre thereby violating the Covid-19 induced restrictions.