KAMPALA – Family members and friends have asked security agencies to release Mr Geoffrey Bwambale, the mobilizer of the opposition National Unity Platform (NUP) in the Rwenzori sub-region, whom they say was abducted by unknown armed men on Sunday afternoon.
According to Bwambale’s brother Wycliffe Masereka, men in army uniform and civilian clothes abductors took him from a hospital in Kasenge, Wakiso District where he worked and whisked him away in a silver, Toyota Hiace commonly known as drone.
This was confirmed by Bwambale’s workmate, who claimed the abductors said that Mr Bwabale was needed for questioning at the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) in Kireka.
“At Sunday midday, seven armed men, three wearing Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) uniform and others in plain clothes, came to our hospital. The men in plain clothes surrounded Mr Bwambale before dragging him into the drone where the other men (in UPDF uniform) waited from,” Mr Bwambale’s workmate said.
He added. “The abductors said Bwambale was needed by their superiors at SIU Kireka for questioning, but today (yesterday) we have been informed that he is not at SIU [Kireka].”
On Sunday evening, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine, the NUP President, also asked for Bwambale’s release.
“Just learnt of the abduction of comrade Bwambale Geoffrey “Western Prince”, our mobilizer in the Rwenzori sub region. Bwambale was abducted by armed men today (Sunday) afternoon from Kasenge, Wakiso District. We’re doing our best to trace him.” he tweeted.
Masereka revealed that they have not received any information regarding his whereabouts, with authorities at SIU Kireka denying his detention.
“We sent some colleagues to SIU in Kireka to trace him, but we are yet to receive the feedback,” Mr Masereka said.
“We do not understand why he was arrested because has not been in active politics since 2021 when he was arrested for two months on cases of treason before he was set free by the court,” he added.
Mr Masereka urged all the relevant authorities including police and UPDF to ensure that his brother gets justice on time.
“We are also worried that our parents who are currently ill may die on receiving the news of their son’s arrest since he entirely catered for their treatment,” he said.
When contacted, the UPDF Spokesperson, Brig.Gen Felix Kulayigye could not confirm whether Mr Bwambale was in the hands of the national army or not.
“I don’t have any information about the said incident, but I will revert in case the information becomes available,” he said by telephone yesterday.
The alleged abduction of the NUP mobilizer comes at a time when the opposition political party continues to demand for the release of its supporters including Vicent Nalumoso and Martin Lukwago who were allegedly abducted from Bugolobi market by security operatives in 2020.
The NUP leadership has always accused security operatives of abducting and detaining its supporters since 2020 some of whom their whereabouts have not been revealed since then.
Speaking to journalists last month, the party secretary general, Mr Lewis Rubongoya tasked government to release a number of the party members who are in various prisons and those who have been detained incommunicado. Some of the NUP missing supporters are; Jamshid Kavuma, Vincent Nalumoso, ShafiK Wangolo and Musisi Mbowa, among others.