Opposition female legislators have petitioned the speaker of parliament over the continued violation of the rights of women and the threat to their lives which also violates the Constitution.
The legislators protest the actions of security officers (UPDF and the Police) in blocking Women’s Day Celebrations organized in their districts which they say constitute to an affront to the right to associate and assemble as enshrined in Article 29 of the Constitution.
The recent incident was an even on 21st April 2023 organized by Hon Suzan Mugabi, Woman MP Buvuma District at Kyanja-Kutale in Bweema Sub County in Buvuma District when security officers from the UPDF and Police stormed the venue, confronted Hon Suzan Mugabi together with other invitees, beat them up teargassed whoever was around and blocked the Women’s Day Celebrations. As a result of the security officers’ actions, Suzan Nakaziba sustained injuries to the extent that she was and is still admitted to the hospital.
Dressed in black, the MPs say actions of security officers (UPDF and the Police) in blocking Women’s Day Celebrations are illegal, irrational and ultra vires and constitute an affront to the right to associate and assemble enshrined in Article 29 of the Constitution.
The legislators enumerated other incidents where Police and RDCs in the different Districts and Cities deployed the same tactics to block Women’s Day Celebrations organised by Hon. Members of Parliament; Hon Kaaya Christine Nakimwero (Kiboga District Woman) on 31st March 2023; Hon Kabugho Florence, (Kasese District) on 03rd April 2023; Hon Acom Joan Alobo (Soroti City) on 14th April 2023; and, Hon Nyakato Asinansi (Hoima City) on 08th March 2023.
While speaking to the press today, Mityana Woman MP Joyce Bagala wondered how women leaders who are mandated to spearhead development activities in respective constituencies can be blocked from executing their roles and more so by RDCs whose constitutional role is totally different.
“Despite being opposition MPs, we are members of parliament who were elected to serve for five years and we must fulfill he mandate for which we were elected” Bagala said vowing that the Women MPs are ready to defend their rights whatsoever.
The petitioners contend that the actions and conduct of the security agencies and officers under the command of the RDCs are systematically made to block the Opposition Members of Parliament from interfacing with their constituents, in contravention of the right to associate and assemble enshrined in Article 29 of the Constitution, which must stop.
They also want parliament compel the Minister of Presidency to appear in the Presidential Affairs Committee with her RDCs in the affected Districts so that they can personally account for their actions.
Other resolutions include; all officers and RDCs/RCCs involved in the assault of all the affected MPs be prosecuted personally before Courts of law, and Security agencies be restrained, stopped and prevented from blocking Women’s Day Celebrations or any other meeting and assembly permitted by law.