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Uganda elections: Security chiefs assure peace

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Uganda elections: Security chiefs assure peace by Kenyans247(1): Mon 11, January, 2021 08:29am
What you need to know:
The deputy commander of Land Forces, Maj Gen Sam Kavuma, dismissed concern from the public that there will be violence if some presidential candidates don’t win the election.
Internal Affairs minister, Gen Odongo Jeje, said some presidential candidates have issued statements threatening peace and security.
Security chiefs have assured Ugandans of peace during and after the elections set for January 14.

They made the remarks during a joint security press conference on the forthcoming general elections at police headquarters in Naguru, Kampala on Thursday.

They also advised people living in towns against fleeing to rural areas in anticipation of election violence.

The deputy commander of Land Forces, Maj Gen Sam Kavuma, dismissed concern from the public that there will be violence if some presidential candidates don’t win the election.

“We have been receiving information and intelligence that some of our people are scared. Some have started leaving the places where they registered to vote and are going to villages. That isn’t good. Ugandans are supposed to exercise their constitutional rights in choosing their leaders,” Maj Gen Kavuma said.


Inspector-General of Police, Martins Okoth Ochola, said whoever causes violence will be prosecuted.

“I assure the whole country that whoever foments trouble will regret why his or her mother gave birth to him or her. I repeat, whoever thinks will cause anarchy in this country will regret the consequences,” he said.

The run-up to the general elections has been marred by violence, with more than 50 people shot dead between November 18 and 19 last year, during protests against the arrest of National Unity Platform presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine.

Attacks on journalists
On the issue of security agents attacking journalists covering the elections, Mr Ochola said the latter are to blame.

He accused them of attacking security officers and unjustly portraying police as a brutal force that is undermining the government.

“It isn’t that we are targeting the media. No, we are protecting your lives. We are telling you that there is danger there, you are insisting that you must go there [sic. Yes, we shall beat you for your own sake - to help you understand [that you should] not to go there. Yes, we shall use reasonable force to ensure that you don’t go where there is a risk. Actually, I have no apology,” he said.

Several journalists have been attacked by security forces during election campaigns, with one still under intensive care.

Defence minister Adolf Mwesige used the forum to ask Ugandans to vote for President Museveni before adding that the deployment of soldiers around the country is intended to provide security.

“Security forces including Uganda Peoples Defence Forces will be deployed during and after the elections to protect your businesses and investments including tourism sites. They will be fully protected so there is no need to panic,” he said.

Politicians' fears
Responding to Mr Kyagulanyi’s decision to evacuate his children from Uganda due to fears that they could be harmed, Mr Mwesige said, “It isn’t correct to allege that ... those fears that are unfounded. I would like to ask all these candidates to settle down. Their families will be safe.”


Internal Affairs minister, Gen Odongo Jeje, said some presidential candidates have issued statements threatening peace and security.

“These utterances and actions have caused concern and, to some extent, worry for a number of citizens. Citizens now fear that come January 14 and/or immediately after, their lives and property might be threatened,” he said.

He cautioned against violence, saying, “You don’t have the means to cause violence and it might be extremely detrimental for you to attempt to do so. It is only good manners to try not to do what you know you can’t accomplish. Don’t even attempt it.”

Commissioner-General of Prisons, Johnson Byabashaija, said they are creating more space in detention centres to accommodate those remanded.

https://nation.africa/kenya/news/africa/uganda-elections-security-chiefs-assure-peace-3252788

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