Former Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi, says he will not be stopped from holding consultative meetings on his Presidential bid despite his arrest and 12-hour detention on Thursday.
Speaking at his Kololo home, Mbabazi said his arrest was unbelievable but he “can no longer be stopped”.
Mbabazi was intercepted and arrested at Njeru Town in Buikwe district before crossing the bridge at Owen falls Dam enroute Mbale town where he expected to launch his nationwide consultative meetings.
Having declared his meetings illegal by police chief, Gen Kale Kayihura, since “he was not sponsored nor endorsed as an aspirant within the meaning of the NRM constitution and law”, Amama was detained at Jinja Road police station.
He told BBC’s Newsday programme that Museveni was responsible for his arrest assuring his former bush war colleague that he will continue with his political plans and presidential bid as planned.
“I shall not be intimidated by anyone.”
He said the only other time he had been arrested was in 1976, under the rule of Idi Amin “but even Idi Amin did not arrest my children” unlike Museveni who had the former’s daughter, Rachel Mbabazi, arrested too.
While Information Minister, Jim Muhwezi, insists Mbabazi was arrested because “he disobeyed lawful orders and disobeyed police”, Amama has documents showing he notified police about the meeting.
The arresting officer, AIGP Felix Kaweesi, told Amama he had disobeyed lawful orders and was being put on preventive arrest together with FDC diehard, Kizza Besigye, something the Kinkizi legislator, also a lawyer by profession said never existed.
“It has come to my attention that deliberate misinformation regarding authorization of our Mbale consultative meeting is being spread by various government officials,” Amama wrote yesterday on his social media, Facebook page.
“All necessary steps were taken to give adequate notice of the meeting to the area DPC as well as the Local Councils as required in the Public Order Management Act.”
“The act requires anyone who is going to hold a public meeting to give notice of venue, time of meeting, number of participants, etc to the District Police Commander among others. Notice must be received not less that 3 days to the event. Attached herein is the notice we gave police and local councils clearly showing they were stamped and received in time.”
He added: “My team and I will follow the law to the letter. We do not intend to operate as lawless citizens.”
He sent a warning to Kaweesi and his boss Kayihura against interfering with his plans and rights.
“It is shameful to see the police commanders working on commands of the President. This is not a police state,” he said, adding that what happened on Thursday was contrary to what “took us to the bush. We joined the struggle to bring peace, harmony and rule of law”.
Mbabazi promised Ugandans that they will see change within the next six months including good health, education and respect for rule of law.
Meanwhile, Mbabazi has halted consultative meetings programme following the demised of his brother and mentor, Enock Bahemerwabusha.