Parliament's human rights committee will not interface with President Museveni to capture his take on the human rights violations during the concluded general elections.
The probe stems from the speaker's directive that the committee should take stock of the human rights violations that marred the electoral process. The probe team led by vice-chairperson of the committee Agnes Taaka Wejulu interacted with eight former presidential candidates including, Democratic Party’s Norbert Mao, Alliance for National Transformation's (ANT) Mugisha Muntu, and Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) presidential candidate Patrick Amuriat Oboi. Others they met are independent candidate Willy Mayambala, Joseph Kabuleta, Nancy Kalembe, John Katuma and Fred Mwesigye.
They also interfaced with victims of violence and security for the past one month. The probe sought to interact with all presidential candidates, but of the 11, only 8 turned up. Independent candidate Gen Henry Tumukunde, National Unity Platform's (NUP) Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, and NRM's Museveni will not be interacted with.
Kyagulanyi had travelled abroad by the time he was scheduled to appear and was represented by NUP leadership while Tumukunde said he had not been contacted. The committee had hoped to meet Museveni but now according to Wejuli, they wrote to the president before the probe started but they have not got any communication to date.
“We have finalized with our report, but we will not interact with the president, as a candidate who also participated in the race," Wejuli said.
Because he is the head of the state, the committee was planning on interacting with Museveni at State House unlike the usual meetings in the parliament committee rooms. Wejuli however told URN that since they interacted with the NRM secretariat, the party issues will still be represented in the final report. But some members of parliament who sit on the committee had reservations about finalising the report without meeting the president to ask him the same questions they'd asked other candidates.
Silvia Akello, the Otuke Woman MP and member of the the committee says that although they had questions for the president in his capacity as a former candidate, this will no longer happen as they cannot meet him.
“We have scored between 70 to 80 per cent of our interactions, and this is fair enough as you cannot score 100, but our hope was to interact with the president and ask the questions like we did with others," she said.