Leaders of 3 NGOs to face treason charges over age limit demos

Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda ( CCEDU) coordinator Crispin Kaheru. File photo.

KAMPALA–Government insists that three NGOs are funding the opposition parties to cause mayhem in the country.

Shaban Bantariza, the deputy spokesperson of government, said Action Aid International, Uganda, Uhuru Institute and Great Lakes Institute for Strategic Studies are behind the endless demonstrations in the country over lifting the Presidential age limit.

“Why is it that out of more than 100 NGOs in the country, we are pointing at three?” Batarinza asked.

He said the leaders of the NGOs are likely to face treason charges.

Last month, Police sieged the offices of the NGOs, accusing them of involvement in illegal activities.

Police said they collected some materials from the offices, which were to be distributed to the demonstrators.

The NGOs have come out to advise NRM legislators not to amend article 102(b) of the Constitution.

Arthur Larok, the country director, Action Aid Uganda, denied being involved in illegal activities. But he also said President Museveni is desperately not ready to leave power.

Crispin Kaheru, the Coordinator of the Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda, stands outside ActionAid offices that were sieged by police recently. File photo.

Bank of Uganda also froze their bank accounts. Larok confirmed it saying that it has affected their operations.

“Every month we spend sh440m on running our activities in the country, this means the economy is affected,” he added.

Up to now, the NGOs are challenging the Police to produce evidence that they got donor money, to fund to block the lifting of the Presidential age limit.

But Crispin Kaheru, the Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda ( CCEDU) coordinator, explained that government is trying to find strange excuses to gag people’s voices on this matter.

“It is clear, a majority of Ugandans don’t want this amendment at this moment in time. There are more pressing problems including insecurity characterized by unresolved murders; widespread land evictions; natural disasters and unabated corruption etc that government should be fixing; age limits are not among the country’s priorities,” he said.

In the recent survey they conducted, 73% of MPs would not back the removal of age limit.

“When 75% of Ugandans told the Afrobarometer researchers early this year that they don’t want the removal of term limits., had they received donor funds?” Kaheru asked.




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