Opinion: Mugumya arrested as a ADF in 2014, but released in 2022 as a M23…

What happened in Beni?

I found officers from Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence who interrogated me about the Allied Democratic Forces. One of the most painful things I witnessed is someone die out of suffocation and unfortunately I leaned against his dead body for the entire night.

How did you know they were CMI operatives? Were they clad in uniform?

They had army uniform and they introduced themselves to me as such. On the first day, they were two. They asked if I had links with ADF then shortly after said I was coming to link up with the People’s Redemption Army. I told them I was just running away from your brutal regime. On the second day, another set of three CMI operatives came. I remained in Beni for three weeks before I was called for a joint interrogation between Congolese authorities and CMI. They debated if to bring us back to Uganda or hold us in Congo” (Ivan Okuda – ‘I was arrested while fleeing to exile, says Mugumya, 19.12.2015, Black – Journalist, Cursive – Mugumya, Daily Monitor).

You know when are story is too good to be true, it’s most likely not true. The story of Sam Mugumya will be one for the ages. The sudden way he was kidnapped, taken-away in October in 2014 and later found out to be in custody in Beni, Democratic Republic of Congo in November 2014. He also spent time in a prison in Kisangani as well. Before he was transferred from there to Kinshasa and Ndolo Military Prison, where he spent most of the time behind bars until his released on the 21st October 2022.

Mugumya spent 8 years in custody. As he was arrested for involvement in the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF-NALU). As he was supposed rebel with a fictitious name: “Katembo Mukiga William”. There was also additional factors put into play like he was having either “cargo” or “bags of monies”. Which have never been proven or evidence for the public to see. Therefore, a lot of hearsay and never any real given fact.

Now 8 years later in the documents released as his free. They are now claiming he was involved or participated in the Mouvement du Mars 23 (M23). That is in contrast to the reported connection to the ADF-NALU, which was rumoured for years.

Mugumya himself said he was arrested, as he was fleeing to exile himself. The Dr. Kizza Besigye aide was trying to get to freedom, but instead was sent to the slammer abroad. The Observer reported this back in 2014:The army spokesman, Lt Col Ankunda, said then that Mugumya had been found in possession of dollars and was suspected to be involved in subversive activities” (Edris Kiggundu – ‘Where is FDC’s Sam Mugumya?’ 11.11.2014, The Observer).

There are so many words, but nothing definite. What is likely is that the authorities apprehended him within Uganda and kidnapped him. Because, no one knew where he was and he suddenly disappeared. Later to be find in custody in Beni (DRC) which means the authorities of Uganda did help him cross and get detained there. It happened in such a manner, that he never returned and was a suspected rebel or a militia member.

That’s why you know these stories don’t add up. It is total fabrication and an injustice served Sam Mugumya’s way. He has been a victim of his activism and association with Besigye. If he hadn’t been a part of Reform Agenda and Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). He wouldn’t be here. The authorities targeted him, because the likes of him was the future. We are seeing that happening today with associates of the National Unity Platform (NUP) who are kidnapped and disappearing for the public sphere. Therefore, Mugumya is just a representation of the oppression the government of Uganda is doing. While they where able to use the Courts and Prisons to silence Mugumya for years.

It is a long time to be paying the price for doing the right thing. Mugumya has paid a huge price and it has cost. Back in the day he was ADF and now his M23. You just know the whole thing is made up. That’s the gist of it.

What is tragic is that Mugumya spent 8 years behind bars and only because of political affiliation. He was a target and a means to an end. That’s why he was kidnapped and never returned to Uganda. Mugumya lingered in jail because of who he was affiliated with. That was all the authorities needed and Military Court could find excuses to keep him behind bars too. It took years before he went to trail and now that his released. The story has changed again.

I wonder where the “cargo” and where the “dollars” went. If they even existed. Secondly, the UPDF spokesman Paddy Ankunda better have his story straight now. Especially, if his asked about this. It’s all a unique situation and this sort of thing has to be tested.

This is injustice and Sam Mugumya has been scarred, he has been tested and worse, he paid a price of losing eight valuable years. He lost so much time in detention, instead of being free and a voice of reason. His now free, but his story needs to be told. As it is a story on how the authorities targets dissidents. Peace.

Sam Mugumya is finally released after 8 years in Ndolo Military Prison…

The Commander of the FARDC (Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo) North Kivu Region, Brig Gen Muhindo Akili Mundos has confirmed that forces under his Command arrested Former FDC Leader, Dr Kiiza Besigye’s Political Assistant Mr Sam Mugumya on 21st October 2014. This was during a Joint News conference with his Ugandan Counterpart, UPDF 2nd Division Commander Brig Peter Elwelu following a Security meeting in Kasindi Town of DRC on Tuesday 12th November 2014. Brig Mundos said Mugumya was arrested alongside 02 other Ugandans and 02 Congolese after the entered the country through an illegal entry point near Ishasha boarder. He added that Mugumya was using false names “Katembo Mukiga William” but on interrogation he was proved be Sam Mugumya. He said they suspect he could be involved in dangerous activities likely to hurt the current cordial relationship between Uganda and DRC and as a result he was transferred from his headquarters in Beni, to the capital Kinshasa for further investigations” (UPDF – FARDC confirms Sam Mugumya’s Arrest, 14.11.2014).

Today on the 21st October 2022, it is confirmed that Sam Mugumya is released from Ndolo Military Prison in Kinshasa. Mugumya has now spent 8 years behind bars or a total of 96 months in prison in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Mugumya has gone through a lot. The Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) pushed for his release and also being moved to Uganda. However, the authorities in Uganda didn’t want him to return. That why we know his been a political prisoner in the DRC.

He was arrested because of his political affiliation and that he was associated with Dr. Kizza Besigye. That was the reason for his imprisonment. It wasn’t because of his supposed connections to militias or anything. This was the excuses and arguments, which the authorities used to keep him in prison. He was a political prisoner and have paid a huge price for doing so.

Mugumya has suffered in prison. No one can say it has been easy. The man has been torn and could have gotten a broken spirit. Instead he has soldiered on and awaited freedom. He has stood tall in the midst of adversity and shown his strength.

Okello-Oryem did state in fact in 2016 that there was no chance of a fair trail or extradition. That was how this score was settled and Mugumya just had to pay the price. He was a victim of the association and the allies he had chosen. That’s why he was taken into custody and moved to a prison in Kinshasa. All because he was affiliated with Besigye. This was all the authorities needed and they let him suffer for 8 years.

It is good to see the picture of Sam Mugumya holding a note “Free At Last”. Also another picture on the outside of prison. He shouldn’t have been a felon in the first place. He has suffered, paid the cost and should be paid by the state for the injustice. However, we know there will be no consequences to the ones who detained him or held him captive. Mugumya was a victim of circumstance and political activism. That’s all it took.

The price for standing tall and being brave cost him 8 years. 8 years in a miliary prison in Kinshasa. Mugumya deserve not only a heroes welcome, but to be honoured for his bravery. He could have given in and been gone by now. However, he soldiered on and knew deep down it would end. Nevertheless, it shouldn’t have been this hard.

The authorities of DRC failed him and so did the authorities in Kampala. If he had been one of “them“… they would have sent a military attaché and picked him up somehow. However, he was a target and the NRM was happy, that he was out of sight and out of mind. Peace.

Opinion: It takes nothing to “disturb the peace” of the Speaker…

“A young man accused of tweeting an inappropriate joke about Speaker of Parliament Anita Among was yesterday sent back to jail after the presiding magistrate said she was indisposed. Mr John Sentamu, aka Kelly Slender, 26, was picked up by a drone at his workplace more than a month ago in connection with disturbing the peace of the Speaker on Twitter” (…) “According to the charge sheet before court, Mr Sentamu, between July and September in Kampala, willfully, and repeatedly, used his twitter handle @JOHNKELLYTON 5 using user name Kelly Slender to disturb the peace of the Speaker of Parliament with no purpose of legitimate communication” (Precious Delilah – ‘Shop attendant remanded for tweeting ‘joke’ about Speaker Among’ 19.10.2022, Daily Monitor).

Some people have little spines. They have such little ability to grasp reality and be in the public sphere. It is like their entitlement is outrageous. The feel so unique, special, and prestigious that you should just bless them. That’s how it seems with the current day speaker of the 11th Parliament.

Speaker Anita Annet Among is the new breed of entitled and enriched cronies of the regime. She is the sort that can say obnoxious things about detractors or dissidents. However, the moment they retort. They got to bend the knee and apologize. That’s the sort of rank and office has now.

The Speaker is acting out of line and cannot stomach her office. We have already seen her actions towards Francis Zaake MP and now against a civilian too. The civilian she is serving for in office. If it wasn’t for the civilians, she wouldn’t have an office to go to. However, when your up high and mighty, you forget those things. It is only when the buck stops and the master your serve is gone. That’s the moment she needs the like John Sentamu.

Alas, the Speaker should be able to take jokes, because she is becoming the pun in plenty. She couldn’t manage her cool with the words of Zaake and now she couldn’t get the joke of Sentamu. Certainly, she needs to buckle up and get a grip. However, that’s to much to ask. Maybe, that’s why she became an ex-wife this year? She cannot manage a man who has the balls and the tenacity to question her? She is so supreme, that she got to be the Kingpin of everything!

Well, life isn’t easy on the top. When a joke can get you in a tailspin and order a drone on a civilian. Your life is surely precious. The Speaker’s mind is so fragile and so easily fatigued. That someone cracking a joke is a direct offence. You know that isn’t much a person or a leader when she resorts to this. If it is a joke of a nobody on Twitter. She could have responded or mocked the person for written it there. A tit-for-tat, but that’s apparently beneath her.

The speaker is a coward and a reckless individual for making life so hard on a civilian. She should put herself in his shoes. What if Kadaga had done this to her while she was civilian. Would that have been fine and dandy? Would it have been accordingly, if Among had cracked a joke about Kadaga on Facebook back in the day?

I don’t think so, but then again… with power comes prestige and prominence. However, she is clearly not able to carry the weight of the office. It is a burden that is to much. Especially, if a civilian’s joke is disturbing your peace. Your mind will never rest or be “tewali”. The Speaker needs guidance or help. But I know it’s futile, because everyone is just supposed to bow their knee to the almighty Speaker and the Leader of the August House. Peace.

Forum for Democratic Change (FDC): FDC Independence Message (09.10.2022)

Today, Uganda makes 60 years since the transfer of power from white colonialists to black colonialists.

In these 60 years of flag “independence”, our country has not witnessed a peaceful transfer of power from one government to another.

Our country continues to be governed by the force of arms, and this history is evident in how the force of arms, and military took over the power of politics in Uganda where citizens are still living under terror.

Almost all former presidents have died in exile. Presidents; Sir Edward Muteesa, Dr Milton Obote, Amin Dada, Gen. Tito Okello, and Prof. Yusuf Lule have all died in exile.

In modern Uganda, Injustice, which our elders challenged, has not been terminated, injustice committed by the political leaders who control power, Institutions, resources and tools of arm-twisting has reached unacceptable levels!

Torture, the killing of citizens, violation of human rights, the capture of institutions, stage-managed democracy, land grabbing, the rot of social services, and apartheid in health and education sectors, that characterised the white colonial rule are still evident up to now.

As Forum For Democratic change, we shall continue to mobilise people for a political transition, and restructure state institutions for the true independence of Uganda where a GUN will be subordinate to the people.

One Uganda, One People

Opinion: The IPOD is a lost cause

The Interparty Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD) who has gotten major funding from Democratic Government Facility (DGF) and Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD). DGF is bound to only last a few more months until December 2022. While NIMD has ceased funding after IPOD has failed to get all parties to sign a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The lasted MoU lasted until February 2022.

Now in September 2022 the IPOD Secretariat might feel at a loss. The ideal of IPOD might seem positive and worthwhile. Nevertheless, the results and the political forum has been more a sideshow than actually being fruitful. The majority party and ruling regime, National Resistance Movement (NRM) has used it more to poach the opposition and have publicity stunts. While the opposition like Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and National Unity Platform (NUP) haven’t seen any sort of dialogue or proper platform to make difference. That’s why they rather distance themselves from it.

The IPOD was maybe made with the best interest in 2010. NIMD and DGF funded the organization to have a place and possibility to meet. IPOD could have been a safe space for the political parties, but we all know this haven’t been in the interests of the Head of State or the NRM. The NRM wants to either intimidate, strike or corrupt their opposition. That’s why President Museveni has himself promised to destroy and get rid of all opposition.

Now in 2022 and after 12 years of IPOD. The NRM is losing one of the few places where Museveni could actually meet the real opposition. Not the “opposition” who is already leaning towards him or co-operating with him. No, the ones defying him or wanting to remove him isn’t now a part of the IPOD.

That NIMD is saying it won’t fund IPOD before NUP and FDC joins is a failure. The parties themselves has decide. They have seen the works of IPOD and what it has “achieved”. The organization don’t have that much to show for it. This is why they cannot even write an MoU, which they cannot agree upon.

The NRM might feel like this is a “victory”. They can point at NUP and FDC. However, that is a very hallow “victory”. The FDC and NUP has done this for various of reasons, but it is clear that the NRM isn’t an honest actor. That’s why activists, candidates and associates connected to the NUP or FDC are either kept incommunicado, arrested or even extra judicially killed. The authorities are monitoring the opposition more than they look into crooks. Therefore, the political prisoners and prisoners of conscience is a well-known phenomenon in the Republic. That’s all because of their affiliation and who they are associated with.

If the NRM really wanted IPOD to work. They would have properly invested in it and not only used it for photo-ops ahead of polls and elections. While also using it more directly to create positive headlines Nevertheless, NIMD and DGF maybe want more for their coins. They want them to actually have inclusive dialogue and talks in a political forum. That sort of thing seems like a thing of the past.

It is not the fault of NUP or the FDC for the end of IPOD. The killer of IPOD is Museveni. Like everyone else it goes back to him. It is his choices and orders, which are reflected here. He is getting his will and certainly not … get a free lunch. IPOD is only destroyed and losing value, as there are no real progress or talks of substance. When an organization like IPOD becomes sub-standard forum and losing all value.

President Museveni cannot be happy with this, because this just shows how flawed his multi-party democracy is. When the one forum he had where all elected parties could meet and talk is now ceasing to operate. The funding of this organization is stopped. Because, FDC and NUP isn’t accepting the conditions of the current MoU. That’s a failure and lacking the general understanding of what it should be.

If Museveni wanted this… things would have been different. Nevertheless, expect the NRM to deflect it or blame the parties for not signing on. Because, why should they sign on to something… when it gives them nothing and only legitimizing the regime. IPOD only gives political currency to the NRM without giving the other parties anything worthwhile. The others are just getting an opportunity to see Museveni close by and be there in his presence. That’s a futile enterprise and if the NIMD see that is an asset. They should just continue to pursuit it. However, it isn’t the product that its portrayed on the tin. It is something else and the ones dismissing it has all the reasons to do so. Peace.

Busongora South By-Election: Return Form for Transmission of Results (18.08.2022)

Busongora South By-Election: A few updates on the polling day

The ones that expect free and fair elections. Well, the reports are in dark contrast of that. Everyone should anticipate a “victory” for the National Resistance Movement (NRM) flag-bearer and case-closed. Because, the military is participating and voting bribery is happening in the open.

The NRM with the help of the forever busy Prime Minister Nabbanja is giving the voters 2000 shillings to vote for her party. That’s what a government official is busy doing in the middle of the polling day. The NRM is giving away 2,000 shillings to the citizens to vote for them. Because, that is what’s called service delivery in 2022 by the “liberators” of the past.

The NRM has also ordered the soldiers to participate in voting in plain clothes and doing it several of times, if they must. That’s certainly a way of boosting the numbers. In addition to that, the armed officers did manhandle and violently attack Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) flag-bearer Kighema Alosious Baguma at his polling station today. He was also arrested as an affect of the commotion. Which happened because the candidate saw the military did go more than once to vote in plain-clothes and reported it.

It is also reported that a NBS TV Reporter was arrested during the By-Election today for covering the incident of FDC flag-bearer being beaten up. The Reporter also had to delete the footage. There are also reports of ballot-stuffing. So, all the tricks of the NRM rigging book is used.

They are pre-ticking ballots, voting bribery and violent intimidation. The perfect combo for a NRM “victory” in a by-election. The only thing missing is mass-arrests of polling agents from the opposition and the whole mixer of pre-fixed results are on schedule. This is the “democracy” that Museveni has created and is so proud of.

There is also reports of ferrying voters from Busongora North to vote in Busongora South County. So, all the tricks in the book is used. The NRM has no heart or ability to play fair. Neither is it free as the Police, Army and the Authorities are all on guard to secure the NRM Flag-Bearer get “elected” to the Parliament. They are using all means and it’s never ending really.

So, all we can do is to await the declared results and the Return Form for Transmission of Results, which will be the end of it. Because, these sorts of elections are getting old. It is the same old tricks and schemes, which is made to benefit one party. That’s all they do and it’s just a loss-loss operation. It is no integrity or honesty in it. Only an open day-time robbery and proof of rigging. This is so obvious and it’s just shows how the NRM operates.

Gideon Thembo Mujungu is bound for the Parliament. His not going there out of charisma, character or campaign. No, his going there for one reason: The NRM decided it and that’s why. He is just another pawn and a “yes-man” they need to vote in favour the State House. Peace.

Bukimbiri County By-Election: Return Form for Transmission of Results (11.08.2022)

Gogonyo County By-Election: Return Form for Transmission of Results (11.08.2022)

Updates from Gogonyo County and Bukimbiri County By-Elections

Today is the day of the polls in the by-elections that is running simultaneously. Gogonyo County in Pallisa district is sort of over before the polls. As there are no real opposition or candidates against the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Flag-Bearer. This is why the real score is on the Bukimbiri County By-Elections in Kisoro district.

The Gogonyo County has had low voter turnout and it’s really an uninteresting affair. The only bothersome thing is that the Electoral Commission didn’t change the ballots after the withdrawal of candidates. So, the Polling agents has to enlighten the voters about if they vote for any of the candidates who pulled out. Their ballots becomes invalided one and will be counted as a spoilt one. Instead of casting a vote that really matters…

In Bukimbiri County is a whole other ball-game. There is already reports of abductions and arrests of the polling agents of the independent candidate, Asigaro Turyagendya. They are now detained at various of police stations. In addition to that… A team led by the Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja, Minister Sarah Mateke and Moses Kamuntu is traversing the county arresting the polling agents and supporters of Asigaro Turyagendya. So, the acts of Soroti East has come to Kisoro for sure.

It is also reported: “Voters in Bukimbiri County By-election are being given between 2000 and 5000 Ugandan shillings to vote either Asigario Turyagenda (independent) or Eddie Kwizera (NRM). This has led to physical fights” (Voice of Muhabura FM, 11.08.2022).

The amount of voters in Bukimbiri is said to be moderate. While drones and heavy security detail in the district. As reported earlier there are alleged voting bribery in the district. However, it is also stated that there have been ballot stuffing going on in Nyanamo Town Council. The source for this was Julius Nkunda from the Voice of Muhabura FM.

We can assess the circumstances here and the outcome is most likely a resounding victory for the NRM. Not because they have the best candidates or the flag-bearers. No, because they have rigged the elections and ensured safe-landing for their anointed ones. They have invested, intimidated and bribed to make it happen. It is just formalities and awaiting the Return Form for Transmission of Results.

Derrick Orone (Gogonyo County) and Eddie Kwizera (Bukimbiri County) is scheduled to be sworn-in and be the next MPs of the 11th Parliament. To think otherwise and naive. This is why the population isn’t eager to show up or participate. Because, everyone knows the drill and it’s close to pointless or derivative at this point. When everyone knows what will go down and who will be announced.

The rest is just publicity, smack-daddy posturing and open blindfolding of the population. Hoping they don’t understand the gimmicks and the games. These weren’t elected MPs, but selected ones. The NRM didn’t need to do much, but they did enough to secure the poll position. That’s very obvious. Yet, another few hallow “victories” for the Movement.

It can celebrate, but everyone knows what’s up and the reality will sooner or later hit them. They cannot do this forever and the public will not accept either. They are made fools off and everyone knows. Peace.

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