Ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) lawyer Oscar Kihika says President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni has never killed anybody and should never be compared to former military president Idi Amin Dada.
Amin ruled Uganda from 1971 through 1979, and is blamed for the murder of several critics of his regime.
Seven years after the demise of Amin, a bush war propelled Museveni to power in 1986.
In power since then, Museveni faces accusations of overstaying in power, and persecuting the opposition.
Last week, Museveni renewed his proposal to ban bail for murder suspects.
The renewed proposal comes on the heels of the controversial arrest and detention of opposition MPs Allan Ssewanyana and Muhammad Ssegirinya over their alleged role in the July and August 2021 Masaka murders.
According to Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago, Museveni wants to ban bail for suspects to further persecute the opposition.
“Tell me one person in his government that has been accused of murder and denied bail? Museveni wants to use the judiciary to fight his opponents. I respect Museveni but let him disable himself of the bush mentality,” said Lukwago during NBS Morning Breeze.
“The problem we have is that Museveni believes in absolute power. We have a subdued parliament and judiciary. The sad thing is that Ugandans are at the receiving end.”
Lukwago noted that by denying suspects bail, courts could soon try dead bodies.
“Bob Kasango was not charged with murder. It was money for pensioners. He presented in court that he had heart disease and should be granted bail. The court refused. They [prison authorities] reported that he died on his way to Mulago. Postmortem showed he died of the very disease he presented in court,” noted Lukwago.
“Do you want to try dead people or people who are alive? I don’t believe in an eye for an eye but reformation. When Allan Ssewanyana was released, these criminal gangs pounced on him and took him. As we talk right now, we don’t know where he is. This is an outright abuse of the law.”
Also appearing on the same show was NRM lawyer oscar Kihika who argued in favour of scraping of bail for murder suspects.
“This discussion is not unique to Uganda. You find in the US, when the person is accused of murder, there are tougher conditions. The discussion goes further to whether death sentences should be there or not, and in some states, there are death sentences,” Kihika argued.
“The President is always quarreling about the judiciary releasing suspects of murder, but the law deems a person innocent until proven guilty. President Museveni believes that society is protected from people accused of murder until they are cleared.”
Kihika went on to say that society would be better with murder suspects locked up in jail.
“You cannot let a serial killer to be on the loose. That means you are not protecting society. The protection of an individual’s right should not be at the expense of others. We have to consider what is best for society while also considering the rights of individuals.”
The NRM lawyer went on to deny the comparison that Museveni was worse than Idi Amin.
“Museveni cannot be equated to Idi Amin because he hasn’t killed anybody,” argued Kihika.
“Not even a suspect?” interjected Lukwago.
“No!” emphasized Kihika.