Gov’t: Why MPs Bobi Wine, Zaake were blocked

Last week’s debacle at Entebbe International Airport when the police blocked two opposition MPs from flying out of the country for specialised treatment was in the interest of fulfilling the laid down procedure, the government has said.

Three ministers – Gen Elly Tumwine (Security), Dr Jane Ruth Aceng (Health) and Dr Chris Baryomunsi on Tuesday addressed journalists at the Uganda Media Centre to explain various government actions since August 13 when violence broke out in Arua Municipality ahead of an election to replace former area MP Ibrahim Abiriga who was killed in June.

Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and his Mityana Municipality counterpart Francis Zaake Butebi where arrested by the police from the airport as they prepared to travel to the US and India respectively for treatment.

L-R: UPDF Spokesman Brig Richard Karemire, ministers Jane Ruth Acheng, Chris Baryomunsi & Gen Elly Tumwine.

They were transferred to Mulago hospital Kiruddu complex for examination.

“Hon Francis Zaake and Hon Kyagulanyi wanted to go abroad for treatment but had not fulfilled all conditions to leave. Hon Zaake had refused to cooperate but now both of them went for treatment. I ask, the media to work towards having a peaceful country. Let peace prevail,” Tumwine said.

Aceng explained that before the MPs could be allowed to travel, they had to fulfil the guidelines of the medical board in regard to any Ugandan citizen going out of the country for treatment.
She said that none of the two MPs requested to be referred abroad for treatment.

” Hon Zaake was seen by a physician, an intern doctor and a family physician. It must have been a specialist. Internationally, we must be seen as a serious country so we couldn’t let him go on that basis. He had not sought permission from police and was refused to leave the country,” Aceng said.

Gen Tumwine told journalists that the chaos in Arua broke out because “some actors in opposition decided to get hooligans and threatened lives of citizens because of their different political affiliations.”

He said that the police is investigating the cause of the chaos and ugly act of stoning the presidential convoy.