CMI boss, former rebels set to meet tomorrow

Returnees of Uganda National Rescue Front II (UNRF II) led by Brig Gen Rajab Ayiga Ayile (in uniform) during an interview at their residence in Kampala on September 25, 2023. PHOTO | ABUABKER LUBOWA

What you need to know:

  • This comes after Daily Monitor broke the story of the former rebels’ alleged detention in a deplorable condition.

The commander of Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI), Maj Gen James Birungi, will meet Brig Gen Ayiga Rajabu Ayile and his team tomorrow to iron out issues that have strained the relationship between the former rebels and the army in recent times. 

The CMI will also update the former rebels on the progress of amnesty and their meeting with President Museveni.

Maj Gen Birungi told the this publication yesterday that members of Uganda National Rescue Front II rebel group Uganda are not under any military detention. He said these handed themselves to Uganda authorities from South Sudan while requesting for peace.

He said Gen Ayiga and his group then requested to meet Uganda’s chief of military intelligence, the chief of defence forces and the commander-in-chief to pave way on how they can be brought back to their country. He added that the army then rented for them an apartment in Ntinda.

“I will meet Gen Ayiga and his group and furnish them on how far the process of meeting President Museveni has gone and also listen to their issues,” Gen Birungi said.

Gen Ayiga went public yesterday, accusing the CMI of locking him up in a detention centre in a house with no water, and poor feeding. He said when they were brought to Kampala, they were told that President Museveni wanted to meet them. However, there is no sign that the meeting was due, a year later

The military intelligence, however, yesterday restored water supply to the house where Gen Ayiga and his team are staying, and granted him freedom to move out after Daily Monitor broke the story of his living conditions.

“Our problem is the delay in meeting the President and being locked here like prisoners. However, we have been informed that the CMI director will meet us on Wednesday here to talk to us. We are waiting for him because we want to meet the President and he gives us a go-ahead to get amnesty and go and settle with our families,” Gen Ayiga said yesterday.

He told this publication that when he and his team met the chairperson of the Amnesty Commission, Justice Peter Onega, they were told that the Commission was waiting for a directive from the President to start the process of granting them their amnesty.

“At the time we came, we were told the term of the Commission had expired but later, they were given two years to process our claim. When we spoke with the chairperson, he told my team that they were waiting for a directive from the President. That is where we are right now,” he said.

Gen Ayiga said his anger and outburst originated from the fact that they were kept like prisoners. He, however, said after restoring what he asked for, he has no problem staying there as the process is worked on.

He also said they had been kept for too long and that his forces he left behind are running out of patience.

“What we want is peace because we don’t want any more wars. When we went to South Sudan, we were not fighting against the government of Uganda. We have come back because this is our country and we want peace for everyone. All we request is that we must be allowed to meet the President so that he grants us amnesty and we go back home to resettle and develop our region,” he said.