Jailed Opposition leader Kizza Besigye has vowed to resume the defiance campaign as soon as he is released from Luzira prison where he is facing treason charges related to the campaign he launched during the presidential elections and insists is legal.
Dr Besigye told a group of 12 FDC MPs who visited him yesterday that if his bail application set for July 6 is successful, he will instantly resume the defiance campaign, rallying his supporters to remain defiant even in the face of an upsurge in adversity.
When he appears for his bail application in the High Court, Dr Besigye said he will also voice misgivings on “restrictions” imposed on him by the Prison authorities after he was barred from publishing a Ramadhan message he had authored.
“The struggle continues. Encourage our people. They should not lose hope. If I get bail, the defiance campaign will resume immediately. What the regime is trying to do is to make people their subjects, to make people feel powerless. That we [government] can pick anybody and lock him [in Luzira] and nothing will happen. We shall not accept that,” he said.
Dr Besigye also warned of a plot to grab land from unsuspecting peasants, saying he will write in detail about dubious land registration schemes, while also asking MPs to specifically take interest in the matter of land grabbing in the country.
“There should not be land registration before there is a clear legal regime and the previous cases of land grabbing are resolved,” Dr Besigye said.
Commenting on his plight in Luzira, he said the conditions have improved since he was last incarcerated there in 2005, only complaining of overcrowding, saying: “I am no stranger to this place. I have to say that the conditions have improved since the last time I was here. The only problem is over-crowding,” Dr Besigye said. He shares a cubicle cell with one inmate.
The MPs briefed Dr Besigye about the parliamentary petitions where FDC MPs have defeated NRM MPs in court and the treason charges that were yesterday preferred against the Nakawa MP Michael Kabaziguruka in the General Court Martial.
Dr Besigye, in his typical cheerful mood, exchanged pleasantries with the MPs, recounting how inmates cheerfully wave at him when he is out of his cell, and how he responds with strokes of toka kwa bala bala, the signature song for the defiance campaign.
When the MPs entered the officer’s room that was manned by three prison guards, security quickly reinforced with an additional five guards who kept watch and listened to all the proceedings.