Opinion: Is the FDC breaching the article 71& 72 in the Constitution by its mere existence?
“Justice looks for no prize and no price; it is sought for itself, and is at once the cause and meaning of all the virtues. . . . The worst kind of injustice is to look for profit from injustice.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
Pardon me, but I got to ask a foolish question. Just to prove a point. It is tiring to know, that every single time the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) is trying to convene their party, hold rallies or even meet up. The Police Force is on their tail. The Calvary is hidden behind the bushes, ambushes them with tear-gas, arresting key people and as scheduled programming. Arresting FDC Party President Patrick Oboi Amuriat. As well, as silencing the meetings between the Central Leadership of the Party and Local Leadership.
The Democratic Principle from the 1995 Constitution:
“II. Democratic principles.
(i) The State shall be based on democratic principles which empower and encourage the active participation of all citizens at all levels in their own governance”
This is so common, that I got to ask, because the Republic, still has laws. More laws, than just the Public Order Management Act, even if that is more used or accessible, than the Penal Codes. Alas, the Political Parties Act of 2005 article 10 states:
“(1) A political party or organisation shall, in its internal organisation, comply with the provisions of the Constitution, in particular articles 71 and 72 of the Constitution”.
So, as the law states that, the key paragraphs of the Constitution is as follows:
“71. Multiparty political system.
A political party in the multiparty political system shall conform to the following principles—
(a) every political party shall have a national character;
(b) membership of a political party shall not be based on sex, ethnicity, religion or other sectional division;
(c) the internal organisation of a political party shall conform to the democratic principles enshrined in this Constitution;
(d) members of the national organs of a political party shall be regularly elected from citizens of Uganda in conformity with the provisions of paragraphs (a) and (b) of this article and with due consideration for gender;
(e) political parties shall be required by law to account for the sources and use of their funds and assets;
(f) no person shall be compelled to join a particular party by virtue of belonging to an organisation or interest group.
72. Right to form political organisations.
(1) Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, the right to form political parties and any other political organisations is guaranteed.
(2) An organisation shall not operate as a political party or organisation unless it conforms to the principles laid down in this Constitution and it is registered.
(3) Parliament shall by law regulate the financing and functioning of political organisations”
Why do I mention all, this, well, the FDC cannot convene or meet. They cannot even hold a meaningful meeting in nearly any parts of the Republic without any interference or legal blockade from the state. Today, was just another day of that in Tororo. This is getting old, as these laws I am reciting is the basics. It is the mere justification of this Republic. The Constitution of 1995 and its words of wisdom. It isn’t me as foreigner explaining common sense. This is the laws of the land.
If rule of law mattered to the National Resistance Movement, if the laws had any values, the FDC would have been allowed to meet, greet and strategies. However, that is merely impossible. As every step of the way, the Police is following, the ISO and Flying Squad is on tight leach. Awaiting orders to block, depose and destroy the venue. That is just what they do. All over the Republic.
The NRM wouldn’t do this, if this was a friendly and a party they didn’t see as a threat. Because the NRM and the Police Force, apparently fears the FDC. That is why they have no issues stopping the internal works of the FDC. They are really just disembarking from the Constitution and making their own justifications with the use of the Penal Code and the POMA. At all means, to silence and oppress dissidents.
The Constitution of 1995 with the articles 71 & 72 is fine on paper, the Political Parties Act 2005 article 10 is perfection too, but what has the power to superseded these ones is the POMA. It is evident, again and again.
That is why the FDC must have violated the 71 & 72, because if they haven’t, why is it so darn hard for them to do internal party politics without the coppers knocking on their door?