President Yoweri Museveni has accused the NRM MPs opposed to the proposed amendment of the constitution to scrap the Presidential age limit as using enemy tactics against their party. He criticized the ‘rebel MPs’ for resorting to use of threats and intimidation instead of fronting their parallel ideas to the party in a civil manner.
Museveni was addressing the NRM Parliamentary caucus meeting held at the Office of the Prime Minister on Friday. The meeting meant to lay out ways in which the party can rally public support for the Age Limit Bill.
But before members had delved into discussions, caucus Chairperson and government chief whip Ruth Nankabirwa asked ‘rebel MPs’ Theodore Sekikubo, James Kaberuka, Silivia Rwabwogo, James Acidiri, Nambeshe, Ssekikubo, Patrick Nsamba and others to exit the meeting.
Nankabirwa had called out the legislators for their “treacherous behavior including issuing threats to fellow NRM MPs” with whom they didn’t agree. Later, members agreed that Sekikubo and the other of his colleagues leave which they did.
Museveni supported the dismissal commenting; “Their issues are in bad faith. When somebody is treating party colleagues as if they are criminals, going on the radio, telling lies about colleagues, inciting violence using social media, that is not something to gloss over.”
“If you disagree with something and come out to say you are not yet convinced, that is a decent way and matter of opinion.”
The President condemned the legislators’ actions which he termed as “using unfair tacticts and tactics of the enemy”.
He said that it is the same kind of behaviour that had prompted the use of security forces in Parliament weeks ago when MPs opposed to the Bill defied Speaker Rebecca Kadaga’s suspension.
“We had to bring security forces in Parliament because these people were defying the Speaker. And now you make common cause with the kind of people that were threatening to kill others and their families?” Museveni went on to say.
“This is not disagreeing. This is enemy actions. Who are you to threaten us? Disagreement should be done through discussion.”
Moments after forcing them out of the caucus meeting, Sekikubo and the others told the press that the treatment they were subjected to was betrayal.
“The President insisted that those of us with opposing views should get out of the meeting. This is an act of abrogating the NRM constitution by sumariry dismissing us out of NRM without any summons to the disciplinary committee,” MP Sekikubo said.