By Ivan Mwine
The government of Uganda has warned National Unity Platform (NUP) leader Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and other opposition politicians to desist from holding parallel swearing-in ceremonies ahead of or during the official inaugural ceremony for president-elect, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, which is slated for May 12th, 2021.
The warning was issued by Hon. Judith Nabakooba, the Minister for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and National Guidance, who revealed during a press briefing on Sunday that the police are ready to arrest any politicians who will hold parallel swearing in ceremonies.
“The official presidential inaugural ceremony will be held on May 12, 2021, at Kololo Independence Grounds and the day has been declared a public holiday,” Minister Nabakooba said.
She added that; “The government warns anyone planning to hold other swearing in ceremonies that they will not be allowed. Ugandans voted their president and he is the one who will be sworn in. All other swearing ceremonies are illegal. Security personnel patrolling the streets will arrest all those involved.”
The Minister also reiterated that protests during the swearing in period are illegal and all those who engage in the same will be arrested.
The Minister’s warning, according to sources, came at the backdrop of intelligence that leaked to security sources a few days ago indicating that some opposition members were planning to hold a secret and separate swearing in ceremony during which they will inaugurate Bobi Wine as president.
It should be recalled that the same thing happened in 2016 when former Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) presidential aspirant (Rtd) Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye swore himself in as president a day before President Yoweri Museveni’s swearing in ceremony.
Besigye would later go ahead to form what he termed as the People’s Government, which he claimed would use defiance to reject President Museveni’s rule during his fourth term.
Insiders reveal that although Besigye’s People’s Government didn’t capture the attention of many Ugandans and soon lost popularity, the government is not ready to see a repeat of the same, reason why security is on high alert to thwart any reoccurrence.
However, it should be noted that although Bobi Wine rejected the results of the January 14th Presidential elections, he has not yet indicated any signs of swearing himself in before President Museveni officially swears in.
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