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Showdown looms as FDC defies police order against holding Rukungiri rally

FDC President, Patrick Oboi Amuriat. FDC party has vowed to proceed with their planned meeting in Rukungiri Stadium, Rukungiri Town on Monday, November 26. (FILE PHOTO)

RUKUNGIRI – The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has insisted that their planned meeting in Rukungiri Stadium, Rukungiri Town on Monday, November 26 will go ahead despite a police directive banning the same.

Senior FDC leaders, including party patron Kizza Besigye and party president Patrick Amuriat, are expected to attend what they call memorial prayers held in honour of Edson Nasasira, a party member who died during a rally against the proposed amendment of the presidential age limit last year in October.

However, the police on Sunday deployed heavily in the area and later in the evening addressed a press conference, warning the party leadership against holding the event.

“We request everyone not to be intimidated or forced to join the activities of the FDC party on Monday 26th November 2018 and as Police, we are preparing and ready to stop anything that is to be done or disturb the peace of others,” said Moses Nanoka, the District Police Commander.

Kigezi Regional Police Spokesperson, Elly Maate, has confirmed that they wrote to FDC blocking the meeting (FILE PHOTO)

Elly Maate, the Kigezi regional police spokesman, added that they wrote to the FDC party, blocking the event but it appears that the party leadership is bent on clashing with the police.

“Announcements have all along been aired, informing and calling upon people to join the party in thanksgiving prayers in Rukungiri main stadium, but, we have written to the secretary general of the party about the same and we believe he has received this letter from the inspector of the police, but they usually don’t inform their people but we have always worked jointly with the party and everything has been smooth,” he said.

Maate added that whereas FDC leadership wrote to the Inspector General of Police, informing him about the prayers on 14th November, they did not specify who the organisers are, in accordance with the Public Order Management Act.

“This is in reply to your letter requesting to be allowed to hold prayers in the stadium but according to the public order management Act section 5, that there are things that you are supposed to have done but unfortunately the letter you wrote lacks particulars of the organisers, meaning that, as police in Rukungiri does not know the organisers to work with for peace during the activities, the reason the activities are stopped” he said.

However, FDC Secretary for Mobilisation Ingrid Turinawe insists that they fulfilled the requirements as stated in the Public Order Management Act and that the event will be held as scheduled.

“I want to state it clearly that we have fulfilled everything that the public order management act requires us to do as a party we have written to police, we have combined all faith, now the DPC and your spokesperson we expect you to keep peace and order, last time you disturbed us and caused problems, stop shading blood, we are Ugandans this is our country now on Monday we are coming to go on with our prayers,” she said.

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