Mbale Woman MP Connie Nakayenze Galiwango has said her life is under threat. Nakayenze told The Observer on Friday last week that she realised she was being trailed on Monday while on her way home in Seeta at about 5pm.
In parliament yesterday, the MP told the afternoon plenary that she has since recorded a statement with police in Seeta, a satellite town outside Kampala.
“When I called my husband, he told me to report to police which I did on Friday. Police advised me to camouflage and use different cars but I have only one car,” she said.
State minster for Internal Affairs, Obiga Kania advised MPs to always report to the nearest police, adding that he would privately discuss with Nakayenze what arrangements are being considered for her personal security.
“We always have a sixth sense about our security. When you notice something untoward to your life, we should make the quickest possible report to police. I know no immediate action may be taken but it will still be on record that you recorded a statement,” Kania said.
Last Friday, the MP said: “When I branched to fuel my car, I saw a vehicle (Toyota Ipsum) branch to the same fuel station but since I was done with fuelling my car, I drove away. When I branched off the main road to my home, I saw the same vehicle behind me but I thought it was a neighbor.”
She said because she had returned home early she felt she would go and check on her businesses. When she got out of the gate she again saw the same vehicle parked near her gate.
“I drove to Mukono but then I realised the same vehicle following me. After I was done with what I wanted in Mukono, the same vehicle was driving behind me. I branched, it also branched off but I did not suspect anything…,” Nakayenze said.
Nakayenze said that while home, she received calls from several people.
“But most of them were cautioning me to be careful …,” Nakayenze said.
As she drove from parliament mid-last week, she realised that a Toyota Premio was trailing her. Just as it had happened on Monday the same week, the Premio stopped whenever she stopped and when she branched off in Seeta, the Premio also branched off.
“When I reached home, I became suspicious and after some time I asked our guard if he saw any vehicle parked a few metres along the way as he came home.
“He told me a Premio had been parked near our gate and he saw men trying to repair it,” Nakayenze said.
“Other people and cars may have been trailing me but I didn’t know. My sons have also told me, they were suspicious of some persons trailing them whenever they stepped out of home. Even now there are people who keep calling me and tell me to be careful. There are some colleagues even within parliament who keep telling me, ‘Connie, be careful’ and I am now realising my life is under threat,” Nakayenze added.
Nakayenze says from October last year when she declared she would not support the age-limit removal bill, she has faced oppression and rejection from her NRM party.
The constitutional amendment bill proposed the deletion of Article 102(b). The bill was eventually passed into law in December last year, making it possible for President Museveni who turns 75 by the next election to again run for office in 2021.
The people of Mbale, the district she represents, warned Nakayenze during the age limit consultations against supporting the amendment. A wife to the NRM director of finance and administration Hassan Wasswa Galiwango, the MP found herself in a fix.
Now, Nakayenze suspects that she is being followed because of decisions she has made against government: not supporting the lifting of the presidential age limit and a report she tabled against government’s position to only increase salaries of science teachers.
Early this year, government proposed to increase the salary of graduate science teachers to Shs 1.9 million in the 2018/2019 financial year while an arts teacher with the same qualifications would earn about Shs 600,000.
As committee chairperson, Nakayenze tabled a contrary report noting that the proposed increment would only create disparity. The House unanimously supported the committee report, halting government’s proposed increase of only science teachers’ salaries.
All the 27 ruling party MPs who voted against the lifting of the 75-year upper age limit for presidential candidates say they are experiencing discrimination.
MPs including John Baptist Nambeshe, Barnabas Tinkasiimire, Loy Katali and Anthony Ssemuli told The Observer on Tuesday that they have been victimised.
They said the NRM continues to deduct their money in monthly contributions yet they never invite them for party activities, which is unfair.
“They don’t invite us for meetings but I don’t care. For us finance people we don’t talk a lot. All I did was to present the views of my people, which I did. I wanted my conscience to remain clear,” Katali said.
Tinkasiimire, however, said he has instructed the accounts department of parliament to stop deducting his money for NRM party contributions.
When parliament resumed in late July, NRM reshuffled its leadership of sectoral committees, dropping all MPs who opposed the passing of the controversial amendment.
Government chief whip Ruth Nankabirwa also shuffled “defiant” members from their preferred committees.
“I was removed from committee on natural resources where I thought I have experience. I was forced to the committee on foreign affairs which would require me to go to exhibit all forms of diplomacy. I am lacking in that aspect but I have to be there anyway by force not by choice,” Nambeshe said yesterday.