UPDF Speak Out On New Rebel Groups, More Arrests Reported
The Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) have for the first time spoken out on the suspected rebels held at different military detention facilities.
The army publicist Col. Felix Kulayigye has told Chimpreports.com in an exclusive interview Wednesday that over 60 Ugandans have been arrested in a massive security swoop.
“Yes, we have very many of them – I think over 60. They were arrested in connection with subversive activities going on in Uganda,” said Kulayigye.
Asked when the suspected rebels would appear in court, Kulayigye said that was the role of the prosecutor not the army.
Pressed to explain whether they had enough evidence to prosecute the suspects in courts of law, Kulayigye responded in the affirmative.
“Just wait, you will see. We have plenty of evidence. We do not care which political parties they belong to. We arrested them for indulging in subversive activities not as members of opposition,” he further stressed.
The opposition has in the past accused UPDF of concocting rebel groups to persecute their leaders.
Kulayigye said UPDF got intelligence that the individuals were planning rebel activities under Uganda People’s Federal Alliance (UPFA) and Uganda National Front/ Army (UNF/A) thus apprehending him.
In a related development, more arrests have been made. Another suspected rebel Richard Nono of Lugazi has been jailed as tension hit peak levels.
Meanwhile, Besigye is today Wednesday meeting leaders of opposition parties discussing whether to issue a statement or not on the alleged rebel activities in the country.
An impeccable source says the meeting which was expected to start at 9am at the IPC headquarters along Katonga Road in Nakasero, Kampala, has been pushed to 2pm after a crisis session of FDC’s National Executive Committee (NEC).
FDC leaders are discussing the rebel saga which could see some of them behind bars.
Chimpreports.com on Monday exclusively named some of the UPC leaders who had been arrested over the new rebel groups formed to remove NRM government from power.
Shortly after this investigative website broke the news, opposition Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) confirmed some of its members had been arrested by security agencies in a crackdown on suspected rebels in Uganda.
In a press statement issued Monday evening, UPC Youth Leader Patrick Aroma said:
“The Uganda People’s 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 rebel activities.”
Chimpreports.com exclusively broke the story providing some of the names of arrested rebel suspects.
They include Charles Okong who had arrived in Uganda from Canada to coordinate the final assault on Kampala with the view of seizing Uganda Broadcasting Corporation (UBC) to announce a new government.
He was briefly detained at Kampala Central Police Station before being transferred to a military facility.
The second suspect is Paul Opobo from Buikwe who was last week detained at Kiira Road Police station in Kampala and interrogated on his role in the new rebel groups. Another Madi Okwora was also placed under custody at the same police station over participation in subversive activities.
Other suspects from UPC and Suubi, an extremist Buganda pressure group, were rounded up in joint operations conducted by military intelligence, Internal Security Organisation, External Security Organisation, JATT, State House Intelligence, and Police counter terror squads.
Arrests were made between late December 2011 to February 11.
The rebel saga is likely to dominate public debate in a few coming days as opposition leaders try to distance themselves from this new development.
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Updated on 2013-05-09 09:25
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