The ruling party is not happy with remarks made by opposition figure Kizza Besigye regarding their candidate in Igara East by-elections, Andrew Martial, who changed his position on age limit and begged President Museveni for forgiveness.
NRM said the idea that Andrew Martial was opposed to the age limit amendment was part of the Opposition propaganda to undermine the party cohesion and consensus on the issue.
“Hon. Martial was part of the Bushenyi District NRM Conference that unanimously agreed to support the Bill.”
In his twitter message, Besigye suggested that President Museveni publicly “arm-twisted Martial, a candidate for MP to support Life-Presidency!”
“It’s believed his election was annulled for opposing Age-Limit Bill, hence the by-election. Desperate times!” Besigye said.
“Lies!” the ruling party replied with great intensity, saying what is true is that the President’s visit exposed Besigye’s group’s desperate attempts to undermine NRM party cohesion through cheap propaganda against individual members of Parliament.
“As a victim of your machinations, Hon. Martial deserved the right to set the record straight,” NRM told Besigye.
The party said Museveni has been and remains the foremost spokesperson and vanguard of its vision and that is why NRM will resist any attempts at locking out senior leaders of his kind through technicalities like age limit and will support its amendment.
“It is important to demystify the impression that age limit amendment is antithetical to political transition. To the contrary, the responsibility of ushering in a transition rests with the people, whose power will be enhanced by enabling them unlimited choice of whom to elect,” the party was loud and clear.
It also took a swing on journalists “or those that pass themselves as such, should not be allowed to get away with sweeping claims”.
“They have a duty to the public and their subjects to report factually, which in this case includes substantiating such grave allegations.”
Besigye warns on land act, age limit
Speaking in Igara East where he was campaigning for the FDC candidate Christine Ninsiima, Besigye warned that government could take advantage of the ongoing age limit debate to divert Ugandans from the land act.
“Museveni wants both badly. Therefore the attempt to make amendment on land is going to come. Our people shouldn’t relax their guard in protecting the provision of constitution on land,” he said.
He said what Parliament is trying to change (amend) is a piece of paper because the constitution is written in the hearts and minds of citizens.
“MPs can change that piece of paper but they will not change the hearts and minds of people. Therefore they can change that piece of paper but the constitution will be restored at some point. We shall guide you on how our national constitution will restored,” Besigye told a gathering at Kajunju village in Kyabugimbi, Bushenyi.
Speaking in the same constituency, Museveni appealed to voters to elect someone because of their ability and not because they know them in person.
The president also said that an NRM flag bearer would benefit the people of Igara East because he will be in position to bargain for the people directly.
He warned voters not to elect what he called opposition liars who depend on politics of blackmail and propaganda.