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4-10 January 2016

Media Monitoring Report for Uganda
Posted on January 4, 2016


Compiled by Emma Allison Howie

  1. Police block Besigye and disperse supporters
  2. Police warn Mbabazi on allegations of violence
  3. Rise of violence during elections


1. Police Block Besigye And Disperse Supporters
Privately-Owned Media

The Daily Monitor, January 6th 2016 – Police block Besigye, fire teargas and live bullets to disperse supporters

  • One person has been injured and rushed to hospital as police in Bukwo district fired teargas and live bullets to disperse Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) presidential candidate, Dr Kizza Besigye’s supporters.
  • Police commanded by Siipi region RPC Gerald Twishime, ordered Dr Besigye and his supporters not to proceed to Tatriet camp in Bukwo district, Sebei sub-region but in vain. This was after a group led by the old people asked Dr Besigye to visit the camp.
  • Dr Besigye broke through a police human barricade and walked towards the camp. 
The police then reacted by shooting live bullets and later tear gas.

The Observer, January 7th 2016 – Police fire teargas, bullets to block Besigye from IDP camp

  • Two people were injured after police opened fire to block Kizza Besigye, the Forum for Democratic Change presidential candidate from visiting Toriet IDP camp in Amanang Sub-county in Bukwo district.
  • The residents told Besigye how they were living in deplorable conditions in the camp following their eviction from Mt Elgon.  They complained that they lack basic facilities like health centers and clean water sources and asked Besigye to tour the camp to see it all firsthand.
  • After listening to the residents' complaints, Besigye and his team decided to tour Toriet Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp but were blocked by police led by Gerald Twishime, the Siipi Regional Police Commander saying they couldn't visit any area which is outside their campaign program.
  • In defiance, Besigye insisted on touring the IDP and within moments the waiting police started firing teargas and live bullets to disperse the crowds.
2. Police Warn Mbabazi On Allegations Of Violence
State-Owned Media

New Vision, January 8th 2016 – Police warn Mbabazi on baseless allegations

  • In response to the statement released on social media by Hon. Amama Mbabazi’s on the alleged brutalization of the Go Forward Team by the Police, we would like to refute the claims by him that his supporters have on various occasions been targeted for arrest, assault, “disappearance” and killings.
  • The statement is devoid of truth; it is misleading, inciting and calculated to arouse unnecessary anxiety in the public. It is unfortunate that the statement is made by a Presidential candidate.
  • The Hon. Amama Mbambazi and his entire TDA/Go Forward team are hereby advised and warned against making such baseless allegations and would better redirect their energy and time spent on tarnishing state agencies to their campagain programmes and activities
Privately-Owned Media

The Daily Monitor, January 8th 2015 – Police warn Mbabazi over allegations of killed supporters

3. Rise In Violence During Elections
Privately-Owned Media

The Daily Monitor, January 4th 2016 – Creeping violence casts shadow over elections

  • Worrying images of men and women, clad in crime preventers’ white T-shirts, wielding sticks with at least one of them openly brandishing a bayonet were seen at former prime minister Amama Mbabazi’s rally in Masindi District last week.
  • It is not known what these people were doing at Mr Mbabazi’s rally and why they had to carry weapons at what was a peaceful political event. But the Go Forward campaign is now concerned about the safety of their candidate.
  • Their concern follows several appeals for calm which dominated the Christmas and New Year church sermons after provocations by the police and other State functionaries targeting Mr Mbabazi and FDC presidential candidate Kizza Beisgye seemed to escalate. Mr Mbabazi is now being trailed to and from his political events.
  • In Alebtong and Dokolo districts, police fired live bullets to disperse Mr Mbabazi’s supporters. In the fracas, Mr Mbabazi’s driver was apparently shot in the head. And in Alebtong District, the Resident District Commissioner, Mr Andrew Awany, was beaten in a fistfight with Mbabazi team. Similar clashes were reported in Ntungamo, Lamwo, Arua, Masindi and Amuru districts.
Foreign media

February 17, 2014, Daily Maverick (South Africa) – Uganda's Gays Are Just the Latest Victims of Museveni's Lust for Power

  • After two months of prevaricating, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni confirmed on Friday that he would sign into law the controversial anti-gay bill passed by his parliament in December.
  • Museveni was also influenced by the popularity in his country of the anti-gay bill – especially within his own party. So far, 2014 has been a tricky year for Uganda’s long-time leader, who has been President since 1986. Such longevity inevitably breeds resentment, and opposition, and there have been a few signs that some of his top lieutenants are starting to demand more power for themselves. With presidential elections coming up 2016, Museveni is under pressure in some quarters to either step down or reaffirm his commitment to the top job.
  • The main challenge comes from his Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi, who has been quietly mustering NRM support for a bid to unseat Museveni as the party’s presidential candidate in 2016. Mbabazi is also NRM secretarygeneral, and is very influential within the party.
  • It’s not easy to keep hold of power for nearly 30 years. Along the way, Museveni has made enemies and sacrificed innocents in his bid to stay in State House. Uganda’s gay population is just the latest victim of his lust for power.
UN/FARDC operations against Ugandan rebel group ADF-Nalu in the DRC
State-owned media

March 2, 2014, New Vision – UN Gunship strike ADF base in Congo

  • UN gunships targeted a base of the Ugandan Muslim rebel group ADF-Nalu in the eastern DR Congo for the first time Saturday, the UN force said.
  • ADF-Nalu is led by Jamil Mukulu, a Christian convert to Islam, and has never really managed to take its fight against Yoweri Museveni's regime to Uganda.
  • International Crisis Group said in a report last year the rebel group had "shown remarkable resilience attributable to its geostrategic position, its successful integration into the cross-border economy and corruption in the security forces".
  • Some observers have voiced concern that it could become a link in the growing network of radical Islamist groups in East Africa.

March 4, 2014, New Vision – Five UN troops wounded in DR Congo Attack

  • The UN mission for the stabilisation of the country (MONUSCO) said in a statement the attack occurred in the area of Beni in North Kivu province.
  • Beni is more than 300 kilometres north of Goma, the capital of North Kivu, a restive resource-rich province that borders Rwanda and Uganda.
  • On January 16 the FARDC regular army launched an offensive against the Ugandan Muslim rebel group ADF-Nalu and announced in mid-February that it had inflicted severe losses on the rebels.
  • ADF-Nalu stands for Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda. It is one of the oldest but lesser known rebellions based in North-Kivu and is considered the only Islamist organisation in the region.

March 5, 2014, New Vision – Museveni orders on early campaigns

  • President Yoweri Museveni has told NRM leaders, who are reportedly engaged in underground campaigns, that it is not yet time for politicking.
  • “We are supposed to be working now and not campaigning,” Museveni reportedly said, adding that those politicking are confusing the people who voted NRM for a five-year term of office.
  • One MP reportedly sought clarification from the President about reports that State House has deployed spies to snoop on MPs and ascertain those deemed not loyal to the President, a thing the MP reportedly said has caused panic among some MPs.

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