Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has criticised police siege of NBS TV offices which saw some politicians spend a night in the studios while presidential hopeful Charles Rwomushana was arrested.
“I had a sleepless night because I stayed in contact with colleagues who slept at NBS studios after police mounted roadblocks around NBS TV offices in Kamwokya last night,” Lukwago said on Wednesday.
Mukono Municipality MP Betty Nambooze, Kira Municipality MP Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda, National Unity Platform member Fred Nyanzi slept in the studios while Kabula County MP James Kakooza was arrested and later released.
Lukwago who was appearing on NBS “Morning Breeze” programme, said there was no explanation as to why they sealed off the place.
“We need to get an explanation for this. These are signs that call for extra vigilance.”
“I don’t believe we must get into party politics at this time. We are still faced with a dictatorship that we must dismantle. I don’t believe we have a conducive environment to compete, present manifestos, and garner support,” Lukwago told NBS.
“We need to move in a direction where we are all together.”
Lukwago said this is something that made him break the chains from within Democratic Party [DP] to get in touch with colleagues with the same vision hence joining Forum for Democratic Change [FDC].
“There comes a time when reality sets in because you can’t wish political entities away. Ultimately, you find yourself in a situation where you have to be in a political party.”
He went on: “If our forefathers who started DP came back right now, they would disown it. It has since strayed from its former mission and vision. I have thrown in the towel from DP and joined a new political entity. The struggle to liberate this country attracted me to FDC.”
Lukwago said he has been treated like a stranger in the DP because of the reforms he championed.
From the time the party decided to go in alone as opposed to the common front, he said they took the wrong direction.
“As a citizen, I have a role to play in this country, and my party had not given me the chance to play this role. I could not waste my youthful years. DP has a very serious leadership problem.”
“I would offer solutions using the DP, but there is burglar-proof. What is wrong with Lukwago teaming up with his colleagues in FDC to continue with the struggle when the DP doors are closed?”
Lukwago said if he had opted to join another political party other than FDC, it would be a double defection from the People’s Government and the DP.
“I have not taken any forms to say I am vying for the presidency in any party,” he clarified on rumours that FDC was choosing him as a presidential candidate.
He said the event that took place at FDC was about unveiling Lukwago as a member.
“I am not about to express interest in that office for 2021. I am the Lord Mayor of Kampala, and that is the position I hold.”
Even for the position of the Lord Mayor, Lukwago said he has not yet said anything.
“This is not about any of us standing. It is about coming up with a strategy to liberate ourselves. I have not come here for a meal card. I do not want to reduce my good intentions of joining a party formation like FDC to merely picking a ticket.”
Takes on Mao
For all the times he has said derogatory things about him, Lukwago has never returned the favour in the same currency.
“I would not speak the language of Norbert Mao. There is nothing personal,” he called out DP President.
“Look at the party’s track record and the successful leaders we have had and see if you are carrying on their legacy. Are you comfortable with the house that is leaking?”
Mao did not take it lying down but quickly rushed to Twitter to express his feelings:
“When the contents of a stomach are not at peace with each other the exits should not be closed. That way the most unsettling contents are able exit,” Mao tweeted.
He added: “Some exit as gases, others as liquids or solids. Some will exit quietly, others will exit with a lot of noise. That’s politics 4u!”