Muntu warns of breakdown in security command
Posted Tuesday, March 25 2014 at 02:00
Forum for Democratic Change president Mugisha Muntu has warned of what he termed as a “breakdown in the command structure of security agencies” in the country, forecasting that a crisis is looming if “leaks “are not plugged.
Gen Muntu sounded the warning at the FDC headquarters in Najjanankumbi yesterday as Opposition political parties and civil society groups met to hammer out a contingency plan if security agencies remain hell-bent on blocking rallies they are organising to drum up support for electoral reforms.
UPC president Olara Otunnu, Leader of Opposition in Parliament Wafula Oguttu and retired Bishop Zac Niringiye attended the briefing. They have given the government up to April to respond to a raft of 10 electoral reforms they insist will guarantee free polls in 2016 or they unveil a new move.
At the briefing, President Museveni, Internal Affairs minister Gen Aronda Nyakairima and the Inspector General of Police, Gen Kale Kayihura, were singled out as the brains behind the blocking of Opposition rallies.
“I was in the Army, when I am in a situation like this, I closely analyse and see a breakdown in the command system of the State security agencies. There is a breakdown of who gives orders on the ground. The breakdown is building up within the Army and the police,” Gen Muntu said.
Gen Muntu made the remarks as he attempted to explain the reasons behind a surge in what is viewed as violence meted out on Ugandans by security agencies while dealing with activities of opposition politicians within Kampala and across the country.
In the latest such incidents, Police fired live ammunition as it blocked attempts by Opposition politicians to hold rallies in Mbale and Soroti over the weekend. He added: “In human psychology, whoever is humiliated will also humiliate another person. Internally within the police, there are different people giving orders. I have seen a situation where this [breakdown] becomes a lashing out and that lashing out can be to any direction”.
Mr Otunnu reiterated that Mr Museveni will be squarely to blame for the consequences if the government does not warm up to the proposed electoral reforms. “If the regime blocks the option of free elections and democratic change, then Museveni must be held responsible for the consequences. The responsibility must lie squarely on his side and on his head,”Mr Otunnu said.
Yesterday, Mr Patrick Onyango, the deputy police spokesman, accused the General of “politicking”, dismissing his comments as “baseless”. “There is nothing like a breakdown in command. We still have the IGP- Gen Kale Kayihura- who is leading the police. He still has the command and control of the police,”Mr Onyango said.