Politics

Inside the ‘Fierce Mission’ to Rescue Kampala Lord Mayor Lukwago

Erias Lukwago

Tempers started rising hours before the case in which the Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kayihura and his senior commanders were sued for human rights violation started.

A group of unknown people had as early as 5 am besieged the Makindye Chief Magistrates court. These later came to be identified as ordinary citizens loyal to the police chief.

They carried placards and shouted chants in support of Gen. Kayihura whom they said could not be subjected to court since there is a Constitutional court application challenging the same.

The group trooped around the court premises in show of solidarity with the police boss while protesting against the court’s decision to summon him.

Initially, medical http://cjr.edu.mx/modules/mod_jaslideshow2/elements/category.php the Chief Magistrate, rx Richard Mafabi sent a message that court would not sit if the group continued with their activities and they accepted to  withdraw the placards.

Court Kicks Off

The court session kicked off with most the protesters unaware of what was taking place inside as they continued with their chaos outside the court room.

The group made more chaos outside court premises by threatening to clobber the complainants’ lawyers led by Abdala Kiwanuka, visit web Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago and Nicholas Opio.

“We want to show them,” vowed the group.

Counsel Nicholas Opiyo speaking to policemen ahead of the 'rescue mission'

Counsel Nicholas Opiyo speaking to policemen ahead of the ‘rescue mission’

The case was later adjourned to August 29, to allow the Director of Public Prosecutions to formally apply to take over proceedings of the matter, for it was criminal in nature.

Meanwhile, the complainants’ lawyers sought refuge inside the Chief Magistrate’s chambers for they could not dare cross the irate pro-Kayihura group who were waiting for them outside court.

Rescue

Meanwhile, plans to rescue the group of lawyers started spearheaded by Kampala Metropolitan Police Commander Frank Mwesigwa and one of Lukwago’s aides, Deogratious Mbabazi .

More police patrol vehicles were seen arriving at the court premises as more anti- riot men swung into action.

Later, it was agreed that they would first evacuate   Abdulla Kiwanuka so he could drive but this attempt was almost foiled as the angry group stormed his vehicle and smashed the windscreens.

It was now crystal clear to police that it was not going to be a picnic evacuating the lawyers.

As the adage, tough moments call for tough measures goes, the KMP commander Mwesigwa, Nicholas Opio and Lukwago’s aide were seen in a ‘crisis’ meeting  trying to figure out the ways they could use to safely evacuate the remaining lawyers.

Anti-riot police deployed heavily at the court

Anti-riot police deployed heavily at the court

Opio persistently told the police commander it was not safe for them to pass and requested for more protection.

Later, Mwesigwa himself led the operation that saw Opio safely evacuated without the notice of the angry supporters.

It was now Lukwago’s turn to safely move out of the court premises but this was not going to be a sail through like the first attempts.

Lukwago’s supporters who were fewer than the ‘enemy’ insisted they could not allow him move even an inch from the Chief Magistrate’s chambers for it was risky.

It took more than 30 minutes as police tried to convince them that the Lord Mayor was guaranteed security from the men in uniform led by the KMP boss himself.

Nicholas Opiyo,Deogratious Mbabazi (Lukwago aide) and KMP boss Frank Mwesigwa in a crisis meeting.

Nicholas Opiyo,Deogratious Mbabazi (Lukwago aide) and KMP boss Frank Mwesigwa in a crisis meeting.

A ring was then formed by Lukwago’s supporters and Mwesigwa himself led him to a waiting police pickup.

A fierce battle however ensued as Lukwago reached the vehicle. His supporters insisted they could not allow him use the police vehicle whereas the cops also stood their ground that it was safer that way.

In the resultant battle, Lukwago’s suit was torn as both sides battled for supremacy.

It took the intervention of Mwesigwa’s counter terrorism body guard who ‘scared’ away the supporters and Lukwago was forcefully entered into the police pickup.

About 10 policemen then jumped onto the hind of the pickup in a bid to give protection and later another patrol vehicle followed before Lukwago was safely evacuated in what looked a daring mission.

 

 

 

 

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