Kayihura, Sabiiti Clash over Bugweri Election Campaigns

1160 Views Kabale, Western Region, Uganda
The events of the run up to the parliamentary by-elections in Bugweri constituency in Iganga were the center of a public disagreement in Kabale between the Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura and Jack Sabiiti, the opposition Forum for Democratic Change Finance Secretary. On December 11th senior FDC officials Jack Sabiiti and John Kazoora were held for two hours as they headed to Bugweri to campaign for Abdul Katuntu. They were released after the Leader of the Opposition in parliament, Ogenga Latigo, complained to the police boss about the arrest. Addressing a one-day University Students' Conference in Kabale Town, Sabiiti said the police violated his constitutional rights by arresting him without evidence. He said claims by the police that he was carrying money to bribe voters to support Katuntu were unfounded. In response, Kale Kayihura, who was the guest of honor at the conference, accused the former Rukiga County MP of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. He said he had received reliable intelligence that Sabiiti and Kazoora withdrew a large sum of money to bribe voters. Sabiiti in turn rejected Kayihura's explanation. He said several supporters of the National Resistance Movement candidate Kirunda Kivejinja, used public funds to campaign for him. He questioned why the police didn't arrest people like President Yoweri Museveni and Security Affairs Minister Amama Mbabazi for using tax payers' money to solicit support for Kivejinja. The Bugweri elections were won by the FDC candidate Abdul Katuntu. Kale Kayihura advised members of the political opposition to open communication channels with the police in order to foster a better working relationship with them.