Today Tony Kipoi, the former Member of Parliament in the 9th Parliament in the constituency of Bubulo West. In 2014 he had issues that he had no excuse for not taking part of 15 sittings in the row. Therefore, the Parliament threw him out and had a By-Election to chase him out of his seat. Well, just a year into his term (2012) as MP he was arrested for his connection with rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo, however, that didn’t stop him from serving a few more years, before he was kicked out. Therefore, in retrospect, the issue wasn’t really there, but somehow it became one.
Other than this, there are a Press Release from 24th December 2012, where the Police Force states this: “Yesterday, Sunday, 23 December 2012, the Police with its sister security agencies, arrested Hon. Kipoi Tony Nsubuga of Bubulo East constituency at 10:30 in Matimuku Guest House, Njala Village, Fort Portal, Kabarole district, while he was holding a meeting with some Ugandan security officers and Congolese rebel officers. The Ugandan Officers and Congolese rebels were also arrested. For, some time, now, the Police with its sister security agencies have been closely monitoring subversive activities of Hon. Kipoi Tony in and out of the country. In particular, he has been recruiting personnel from our security services as well as Congolese rebels belong to a Congolese rebel group called COGAI, based in areas around Bunia, Ituri, Democratic Republic of Congo. He had promised to support the rebel groups with fire arms.We also have information, that Hon. Kipoi Tonny has foreign sponsors who at this point it would not be wise to disclose” (Ugadna Police Force, 24.12.2012).
In April 2014, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni expressed this about Kipoti:
“You elected a mad man Kipoi and when he got there, he wanted to overthrow the NRM government with guns. We threw him in. But because of the courts which are confused, they released him on bond and he fled to Congo. You have been here for long without any representation” (State House, 14.04.2014). T
What is striking with this, if this fellow Member of Parliament was already monitored and already had an issue with the and had to be arrested one year after becoming MP. Why wouldn’t the Electoral Commission disqualify him and his candidacy in Bubulo West? Since he was already known for his foreign support of the COGAI in Ituri, Democratic Republic of Congo?
The strangest thing, is that there is no direct connection with COGAI or FPRI. Which the state tries to put forward, and when it comes to making such accusation the state has usually delivered easily against detractors. Therefore, I had to look into possible sources and finds very little proof behind the accusation and the actual connection. Other than police in 2012, but nothing else connecting Tony to any warlord in the DRC.
The pure evidence of a Ugandan connection to FPRI or COGAI is this one from the UN Security Council in 2012: “FRPI also sells gold directly to Ugandan armed forces officers posted along the Congolese border. A regular client, cited by Congolese armed forces, militia members and a Lendu community leader, is a former Ugandan armed forces officer, Alex Mugisha. In exchange for gold, he has delivered arms and munitions to FRPI at the Semliki border crossing” (UNSC, P: 25, 15.12.2012).
With this evidence, there are clear indication that the group of rebels connected to Kipoi has traded their conflict minerals or gold with Ugandan counterparts. Therefore, to have middlemen in Uganda seems natural at this point. That is why the Presidents family is involved in this business as well.
But going back in time, the Observer had an article in 2nd November 2014 written by Sadab Kiatta Kaaya which stated: “In November last year, he was arrested by the DRC authorities but was later accorded a guest-of-the-state status, accommodated and protected by the DRC government. “You know he is a crafty man. I think when he got arrested, he told them that he has a rebel group and given the problems we have with them [DRC], they felt he would be of value to their interests,” Ambassador Kinobe said, when asked about Kipoi’s whereabouts” (The Observer – ‘DR Congo refuses to hand over ex-MP Kipoi’ 02.11.2014).
So after the troubles with law, even as a lawmaker and MP. He still had issues, which followed him from 2012 and also with the refusal to show-up in the Parliament. Tony has been one whose been in the spotlight of the President and the NRM. He has been one of many who has been alleged connected with militias and charged with treason. Kipoi isn’t the first one. He won’t be the last. What I wonder is who is connected to Alex Mugisha and does the business with the Congolese Rebels from Ituri. That would answer a lot of open questions.
It is hard to believe the information directly from the state, especially considering how they are not transparent about their looting of Congolese gold to through the Ugandan businesses. These are kept low-key and used to earn vast fortunes on others misfortunes. While supporting militias and insurgency inside the DRC. That is not news, but a fact that has been stated through international investigations and through the system of the United Nations Experts.
I’m just also wondering why Museveni turned on Kipoi and as he made him MP before taking him down. Now he is supposed detained and jailed in Uganda after a being in exile in Botswana. Why is suddenly back in the spotlight and getting into issues. What did he really do, pee on the lawn outside of the State House? Did he offend the buttocks of the Janet Museveni? What did he really do?
Would be nice to get some proper representation of the possible crimes he did, if he did any, since the evidence and the investigations of UPF isn’t representative and the criminal investigations can be turned in favor of the will of the President.
Why I can also question the government, is because the National Equality and Democracy, a liberation party from the diaspora wrote this on the 3rd December 2016: “The red notice meant that the Bubulo county West parliamentary representative Hon Kipoi Tonny Nsubuga would be arrested if found in any of the Interpol member countries. Interpol found that the organisation was being used wrongfully by the regime to pursue its political opponents. The winning of this case is historically a wakeup call and is a sign of injustice that all Ugandans are going through. Innocent Ugandans have been victims of circumstances for years under Museveni Rule. Since 2012 kipoi’s legal team has been battling political cases with Uganda government for an equal society. He emphasized much on Mr [ Museveni ] to do whatever he could in order to assist in restoring democracy, and stop unnecessary constitutional meddling which has lead to political instability in the country. The regime after falling out with him over political differences, he was accused of trying to overthrow the government, Kipoi left to exile in neighbouring DRC. The government continued to pursue him and even sued him under CRB No 1034/2013and secured a red notice 2014/11357 in Lyon France” (NED, 03.12.2016).
So we have the right to question the state, as the facts will not come from this regime, they will play it in their favor, just like they have done with other dissidents. Kipoi is just one of many in line of fire. Museveni isn’t graceful when coming to opponents. Peace.