At least eight people are nursing minor injuries after supporters of Mr. Kenneth Jogo Biryabarema, the Rubanda District LCV Chairman, who is also an independent candidate for the Rubanda East parliamentary race clashed with the supporters of National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidate, Mr Henry Ariganyira Musasizi.
Mr Musasizi is also the Rubanda District NRM party chairman and incumbent Rubanda County East Member of Parliament.
The two groups of supporters clashed on Monday at around 4pm at St Mark Kashaki Catholic sub parish in Bubare sub county of Rubanda district, where Mr. Biryabarema was going to meet voters from Kashaki A and Kashaki B.
It is alleged that Mr Musasizi’s supporters blocked Mr Biryabarema’s supporters along the Kashaki road who were heading for a campaign rally at St Mark Kashaki Catholic sub parish in Bubare Sub County. Most of Mr
Musasizi’s supporters who were blocking the rival supporters escaped with
The injured include; Odo Betonde, Ronald Kateji, Catherine Sheila Komururu and Annet Tobius. Others were only identified as Medius, Edwin, Bruno and Yoona.
The situation was calmed by the Officer in Charge of Bubare police Post, Mr Moses Potho who came with anti-riot police and the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) officers who fired teargas to disperse the crowd.
“We were forced to use teargas because the political rival supporters were
fighting. Musasizi supporters are the ones who started the whole process because they blocked the road with trees, blocked the church gate yet Biryabarema was going to hold rally,” said Mr Potho.
He however said that they have launched investigations in the matter and
called for calm among the rival supporters because the election process is
for a short time.
Ms Catherine Sheila Komururu, one of the injured and a supporter of Mr
Musasizi said that Biryabarema had never visited St Mark Kashaki Catholic
sub parish and wondered why he decided to come during the campaign time.
“He has never visited this place because he knows that we are supporters of
Musasizi. There is no way how he can use the Catholic Church premises
without our consent as Christians. Even if he used the venue, he has known
that some people are against him,” said Mr Komururu.
Mr Godfrey Tibahikwa, the LCI chairman of Kashaki told our reporter that he had told Mr Musasizi supporters to allow Mr Biryabarema and his supporters to hold a rally but they refused saying that they cannot allow a protestant to campaign on catholic land.
While addressing his supporters, Mr Biryabarema condemned the act of the
rival supporters for blocking the road.
“I visited Ahamurwa sub county and Nyamweru sub county, nothing happened, all our rallies were peaceful and why here. I learnt about the people who were planning to block us from accessing the venue at around 5am on Monday morning, but I want to thank police for clearing the way however much they tear gassed us,” said Mr Biryabarema.
He promised the voters to improve service delivery and lobby from the
government to improve the health, agriculture and education sectors once he is elected into office. Mr Biryabarema later addressed a rally at Murwere play ground in Bubare Sub County.
Mr Musasizi, who is running for the third term is facing stiff competition
from Mr Biryabarema, the Incumbent Rubanda district LC5 chairman.
Mr Biryabarema decided to run as an independent accusing Mr Musasizi of
conniving with the Rubanda District NRM registrar, Mr Aggrey Monday, Party administrator, Mr Dezi Christmas and Mr Gaudioza Kabondo, an official from the NRM Electoral Commission headquarters to “steal” his victory in the primaries.
Mr Musasizi in 2017 declined to support Mr Biryabarema and instead fronted Mr Stephen Kasyaba on an independent ticket.
President Yoweri Museveni invited Musasizi and Biryabarema to a rally in
Bubaare sub-county to unite them but it is alleged that Mr Musasizi rejected the reconciliation saying that he has personal issues with Mr Biryabarema.