A helicopter gifted to NRM presidential flag bearer Yoweri Museveni by NRM vice chairperson eastern region Capt. Mike Mukula, has brought the NRM team to its knees.
The chopper which was first seen hovering over Kololo at Museveni’s post-nomination rally has started taking a negative toll on the ruling party.
On Wednesday, the National Resistance Movement (NRM), Secretary General, Kasule Lumumba, issued a public apology to Amama Mbabazi over the chopper.
During his western Uganda tour, Mbabazi’s rally at Boma grounds Fort Portal was disrupted by Museveni’s chopper carrying Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde.
Mbabazi later petitioned the Electoral Commission citing intimidation of his supporters by NRM mobilisers and supporters and threatening to go to ICC if no action was taken.
Lumumba yesterday regretted and apologised for the incident lacing blame on EC.
She said the NRM “was not aware that Mbabazi was to hold a rally at Boma grounds”.
She said they expected Mbabazi in Gulu because “for us as a party, we were not aware that he was supposed to have a rally there [Fort Portal]”.
No action has been taken on Tumukunde for disrupting Mbabazi’s rallies.
Yet, Police in Arua is holding seven supporters of Mbabazi for allegedly defacing Museveni’s posters.
They were arrested by a team of police officers led by the Arua District Police Commander, Jonathan Musinguzi.
The suspects, according to Uganda Radio Network, are; Swaleh Ramadhan, Sauda Abdulahi, Boniface Afeku, Kalvin Ojaku, Swaleh Adumi, Twaha Angole Ibrahim and another, only identified as Magendo.
Josephine Angucia, the spokesperson for North Western Regional police. told URN, they will be charged with defacement of posters contrary to section 78 of the Presidential Elections Act.
Mbabazi’s posters have been defaced, removed and replaced with those of Museveni in Masaka, Hoima, Fort Portal, Kasese and Bushenyi but no one has been arrested.
The yellow chopper covered in Museveni’s posters, was a gift from Mike Mukula.
Mukula says in 1996 as a very young man, joined parliament owning six aeroplanes and many more personal business in the country
“…those who remember know that I gave a person plane to my sister Hon Winnie Byanyima for her campaigns in Mbarara for the CA campaigns of 1995.”
Mukula says he also gave a helicopter to Hon Prof Mushemeza for his campaigns in Sheema Bushenyi district.
“I have been in this for long…am now back into the private sector…as a job creator and giving opportunities to many young people and building my country in the private sector.”
The Museveni chopper was also used rally masses in Luweero district where Museveni launched his campaigns.
Mukula alos Soroti municipality MP was in it campaigning for Museveni.
It was once again seen hovering over Boma grounds in Nebbi as Museveni embarked on northern Ugandan tour.
While some think Museveni uses the chopper to arouse the curiosity of voters so as to boost his rallies, FDC candidate, Kizza Besigye, says the president uses the chopper because of poor roads.
Inaccessible roads with potholes or no bridges marred Besigye campaigns In Ntungamo and Kisoro districts.
Besigye was later to say that Museveni builds rat ways/paths and then rushes to television to “boast” over building roads.