Uganda Police has come out to dismiss earlier rumors that President Yoweri Museveni had directed police to allow presidential aspirant Hon Amama Mbabazi hold his countrywide consultative meetings as planned.
Police spokesperson Fred Enanga revealed Wednesday afternoon that the force had not received any such directive from the President.
Police maintains, the meetings which are slated for Thursday July 9th are illegal and would not be permitted.
They base on a letter written to Mr Mbabazi by the Electoral Commission purportedly advising him to seek the endorsement of his party before proceeding with the meetings.
Mbabazi, according to his lawyer Fred Muwema, last evening met with President Yoweri Museveni at State house in Entebbe to iron out the misunderstandings between him and Police concerning the meetings.
Mr Enanga described as misleading, the information disseminated that Museveni had agreed with Mbabazi to let the meetings take place.
He also cautioned media houses broadcasting these messages, noting that “they would not be tolerated”
“The Police has noted with serious concern, the broadcast of false and misleading news by radio and television licensees, claiming that His Excellency the President of Uganda, had cleared the intended aspirant consultations of Hon. Amama Mbabazi, scheduled to begin tomorrow 9th July, 2015,” he satated.
“We would wish to categorically state, that the police has no communication to that effect, and thus, its position over the intended meetings deemed unlawful still remains unchanged.”
“We also want to warn all radio and television licensees that there are established channels through which communication from the President’s Office is disseminated and or verified, that is open to all media managers. Therefore, those media houses that are broadcasting and labeling these lies, are working against their professional ethics of providing high quality news. This illegal and prohibited conduct shall not be tolerated by the Police.”
Mr Enanga further warned members of the public intending to be part of Mbabazi’s “illegal” meetings to ignore them or face the hand of the police force.
“Any member of the public who shall be duped into participating in these meetings without proof of police clearance shall have violated the provisions of the Public Order Management Act that carries sanctions with it,” he said.
Meanwhile, the electoral commission on Thursday spoke out once again to clarify on its stance about Mr Mbabazi’s meetings.
The EC Chairman Badru Kiggundu in a media statement noted that all aspiring candidates are required by the Presidential Elections Act while carrying out their nationwide consultations to introduce themselves to the commission, notify police and the local council leaders.
The commission chairman noted however, that the consolations ought to be distinguished from distributor of campaign materials, campaigning, holding rallies, and mass meetings.
Mr Kigundu, further advised aspirants who will be seeking endorsement from their parties to ensure that the requirements under their respective parties, rules, regulations and codes are complied with.