By Mable Nakibuuka
The government of Uganda has banned all members of the public from attending court sessions, just hours before National Unity Platform (NUP) former presidential candidate Robert Kyaghulanyi aka Bobi Wine files his petition in court, in which he challenges President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s sixth term.
The ban on public attendance of court was announced by the Minister of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and National Guidance, Judith Nabakooba, who revealed that the directive was issued by the Ministry of Health, in a bid to prevent the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) amongst Ugandans.
Although according to the Minister, the directive to stop the public from attending courts sessions is aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19, many people, especially Bobi Wine supporters, have regarded this as an indirect way of blocking him from escorting their candidate to court and giving the judiciary an excuse to hear Bobi Wine’s petition.
It should be noted that Bobi Wine is set to file his petition challenging Museveni’s legitimacy as Uganda’s president, after he rejected the results of the January 14 presidential election.
Meanwhile, Minister Nabakooba also revealed that security has been beefed up in various parts of the country following reports that there are some people who are planning to stage nationwide riots between February 3 – 7 in a bid to protest Museveni’s re-election as Uganda’s president for the sixth term.
“We have received information that there are some people planning to cause chaos between the 3rd and 7th February 2021. They are moving around spreading harmful propaganda that the country will shut down during those days. They are intimidating taxi drivers and the public against being on the road and places of work during those days,” Nabakooba tweeted Sunday.
She added that; “I call upon anyone to disassociate themselves from this evil plan. The country is safe and security will work fast to arrest anyone planning to create chaos.”
It is however not yet clear whether or not the police will allow Bobi Wine to march to court to file his petition.
Bobi Wine, who emerged second after Museveni in the presidential elections, had been put under house arrest from January 15th until last week when the High Court ordered the military to vacate his home.