PHOTO: Kilak South Constituency in Acholi MP Gilbert Oulanya (left) standing in solidarity with opposition colleagues at Parliament led by LOP to boycott Plenary over Abduction, detention and torture of Ugandans. His fellow MP Akol from Kilak North Constituency defied!


THE Leader of Opposition (LOP) Mathias Mpuuga Nsamba has blasted Forum for Democratic Change (FDC)’s Kilak North Constituency Member of Parliament Anthony Akol for what he calls defying opposition stand to boycott plenary over Human Rights situation in the country.
In a tweet by the Leader of opposition, whereas all opposition members of Parliament boycotted yesterday’s sitting, it’s only this MP Akol who stood out as lone opposition Member siding with the oppressor.
“We shall know them by their actions”, tweeted angry LOP Mpuuga.
Last week, opposition Members of Parliament led by their LOP walked out of Parliament protesting continued detention, torture and killing of Ugandans especially opposition politicians and supporters by security organs in the country.
Cases of abduction, detention, torture and killing of opposition politicians and supporters are on rise in Uganda.  In fact, Parliament led by Deputy Speaker Rt. Hon. Anita Annet Among has strongly condemned acts of torture and urgently want this to stop because it’s against Uganda’s constitution.
Now, in yesterday’s presser at Parliament, opposition unanimously resolved to maintain the boycott and even launched a move to censure Hon. Jim Muhwezi, the Security minister for failing to perform his duties. The Leader of opposition (LOP) has lodged an official notice to the clerk of Parliament and officially informed the office of the Speaker of Parliament. Yesterday morning, LOP Mathias Mpuuga convened a shadow cabinet meeting at Parliament from where they resolved to censure security minister Jim Muhwezi. If the censure motion is successful, this will be the second time Muhwezi is censured.

Shadow cabinet meeting at Parliament yesterday

Over one hundred opposition MPs including those from Acholi sub region like Kilak South MP Gilbert Oulanya where Akol comes from, were joined by other members of Parliament to boycott the plenary. Shockingly, Hon. Akol defied the opposition position and attended.
This angered Leader of Opposition, referring to him as a deserter whose actions are uncalled for if they are to have team work and solidarity in the 11th Parliament.

In his tweet replying to LOP Mpuuga, Hon. Akol said, “The leader of opposition lacks focus. I and Hon. Akello Lucy the Woman MP Amuru district consulted him that we have issues concerning Acholi sub region in House i.e Apaa Land conflict, cattle rustling and issues of Rt. Hon. Speaker Jacob Oulanyah. What step did you take as LOP?”

MP Akol in Parliament yesterday

MP Akol’s full statement reads: I am the chairman of Acholi Parliamentary Group, I had 3 issues concerning my people;

  1. Issue of Apaa where 4 people were killed. I raised the issue on Tuesday last week and the response from Government was today (Tuesday).
  2. I raised the issue of the health of Rt Hon Speaker to the Deputy Speaker. Deputy speaker decided to communicate on that and I had issues to be raised on the matter.
  3. Three people were killed in Agago District by cattle Restlers and the matter was comming today (Tuesday). I and my Woman MP, Akello Lucy consulted LOP to allow us attend only today’s session which he refused.
    I am in Opposition by choice and i didn’t consult Hon Mpuuga when i was going to pick my nomination form. I consulted my voters who are being killed since 2012. In 2017 over 14 people were killed in Apaa, we lost 3 people killed in August last year.  I account to my voters who brought me to parliament but Hon Mpuuga can’t make me a member of Parliament for Kilak North. Do you think he was going to walk out of the house at the time of the killings in Masaka?
    When you talk about Human Rights violation in this country,  my record is clear when I wrote minority report on Nalufenya torture chamber which was closed because of my minority report. I am a straight forward politician who will speak the same thing day time and even at night. No body will push me to NRM with that kind of loose talk.
    I have respect for Hon Mpuuga but I think he should revise his method of work. What was wrong for him to call me to his office first other than going straight to attack me on social media. Any attack on me on issues of Acholi is attack on Acholi sub region.

Mr. Sadab Kitatta Kaaya, the communications officer office of Leader of opposition poured cold water on Hon. Akol’s defence.
Kitatta said it is not true that Hon. Lucy Akello attended yesterday’s plenary as Hon. Akol wants public to believe. It’s only Akol who attended, but all opposition MPs even those from Acholi Sub region boycotted. So Akol can’t be more Acholi than his colleagues who come from that region.
Sadab said, “As an ex-officio member of the Shadow Cabinet, Hon. Lucy Akello has been part of all the opposition planning meetings including today’s meeting shortly before the Press Conference. She left with Hon. Joel Ssenyonyi to go for a COSASE meeting. I can authoritatively say that she didn’t ask the LOP for permission to attend Plenary but instead told the meeting to include the people abducted from Apaa on the list of the missing persons.” 
He clarified, “Hon. Lucy Akello reported that 26 youths had been abducted from Apaa, and, she said, ‘Apaa is one polling station were Hon Kyagulanyi overwhelmingly defeated M7 even when he didn’t have agents there.’ This is the Akello, Hon. Akol says that she with him attended yesterday’s plenary which is false.”

Isa Kato (NRM): Hon. Akol is just wasting time on petty issues. We must think as a Country. Did this barbarian come out to complain when Women were being killed in Wakiso and other parts of Buganda? These primitive politicians must not be given chance to promote their primitivity. Let all Ugandans stand together when issues arise.
Moses Kyeyune (journalist): Apaa issue is merely an Acholi affair but not a national issue. On table there’s a national crisis about torture and illegal detentions. Mixing things would be diversionary.

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