Running battles and dramatic scenes covered Namboole National Stadium on Monday morning as Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party law enforcement officers clashed with Police officers. The enforcement team accused police of ‘planting’ saboteurs to disorganise the party’s anniversary celebrations held on Monday.
As a security requirement, the FDC party sought police deployment for its 15th-anniversary celebrations today. However, the party equally deployed its personnel to work alongside the police.
Mr Sadic Amiir, the FDC Party Secretary for security said that a number of non-members accessed the venue, with the help of the security team that was provided by the Police.
A scene came up when Amiir’s team reached out to one of the suspicious gentlemen and discovered that he was not an FDC member when he failed to answer basic questions about the party. The team tried to drag him out but it later emerged that he was a non-uniformed police officer on duty.
Mr Amiir noted that they suspect that such people had been deployed to sabotage the function. “Now if such people did criminal or unacceptable things, it could be blamed on the party.”
However, the Kampala Deputy Police Spokesperson Luke Owoyesigyire distanced the police force from plotting anything sinister against the FDC function. He said that police are only available to provide security.
“Why would the police be sabotaging their function? We are there to provide security and that’s all,” he said.
In the same development, there have been bitter exchanges between Police personnel and the FDC security team which claims to be in charge of security in the area. At the checkpoint, police officers chased the FDC security team saying they were interrupting their work.
“This is a security tent; you should not bring your politics here. Let us do our job.” said one of the female police officers as she requested her juniors to push the FDC security team away from the checkpoint.
While approving their function, the inspector general of police Martin Okoth Ochola issued strict conditions to the party including, among others, restricting the function to the party members only and conforming to the Public Order Management Act that prohibits unauthorized or impromptu gatherings.
The FDC was founded on December 16, 2004 from Reform Agenda, a pressure group under the leadership of Col Dr Kizza Besigye, who had fled the country after the post-2001 general election events.
The party attracted disenchanted former members of the National Resistance Movement (NRM), who were challenging Museveni’s leadership, which according to them had swayed from the democratic ideas for which the bush war was waged.