Oulanyah visits Kyagulanyi, Zaake; decries violence

The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah, has expressed concern over the way two Independent members Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu (Kyaddondo East) and Francis Zaake (Mityana Munic.) were apprehended ahead of the Arua Municipality by-election.

The by-election held on 15 August 2018 was held following the killing of Col. Ibrahim Abiriga, and was won by Kassiano Wadri (Ind.), who formerly represented Terego in Parliament.

In his communication to MPs during plenary sitting on Wednesday, 22 August 2018, Oulanyah noted that it was absurd that elections to replace Abiriga, who was brutally murdered, turned chaotic.

“These things bring questions that we should have an opportunity to discuss as Members of Parliament and people of this country. Do we have to make elections this violent?” Oulanyah said.

The Deputy Speaker told legislators about his visit to MPs Kyagulanyi in Makindye Military Barracks and Zaake at Lubaga Hospital, where he interacted with them as well as the health service providers. 

Oulanyah observed that the MPs were in a lot of pain but had no other worrying complications, adding that if any, they would be informed by the medical staff handling them.

“When I visited Bobi Wine, we talked and laughed. Dr. Gideon Nuwagira said muscle spasms on his left back is causing him a lot of pain,” Oulanyah said, referring to Hon. Kyagulanyi by his stage name.

He also noted the external injuries on Zaake’s hands, which he said arose from what he called severe beating upon the MPs’ arrest.

“The doctors told me that Hon. Zaake is suffering from post-traumatic stress and has thus become suspicious of everybody around him. But [both] MPS have been taken through MRI and have no internal injuries,” said Oulanyah.

Oulanyah said that the violence that led to the situation the two legislators find themselves in should not have happened.

“The extent to which violence is escalating in this country is worrying and we should all get concerned,” he said.

He said the country had to reflect on the issues at hand and find a way forward, and urged MPs to organize, manage, and motivate crowds in a proper manner.

“We need to take care with the way we speak to and inspire crowds. It should be in a way that communicates the sense of being a citizen,” he said.

On his visit to Zaake at Lubaga Hospital in Kampala, the Deputy Speaker was accompanied Hon. Muhammad Nsereko (Ind. Kampala Central), Hon. Joseph Ssewungu (DP, Kalungu West) and Hon. Moses Kasibante (Ind., Rubaga North).

The Deputy Speaker also noted with concern a Police Officer deployed at Parliament who was injured following the chaotic events that transpired on Monday, 20 August 2018, saying he was receiving the much needed medical attention.

“PC Magishiri, a counter terrorism officer attached to the Parliamentary Police Division, was hit by a stray bullet. He is undergoing treatment at the Iran-Uganda Hospital in Naguru … investigations are still ongoing and you will be informed on the progress,” said the Deputy Speaker.