The Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID) has distanced itself from the re-arrest and detention of the Makindye West MP Allan Ssewanyana.
The National Unity Platform (NUP) legislator was reportedly kidnapped by plain-clothed security personnel shortly after he was granted bail on Thursday.
In a video doing rounds on social media, Ssewanyana, clad in a grey suit is spotted stepping out of Kigo Prison alone at about 07:30 pm.
He comfortably moves a few metres from the prison gate, which is guarded by prison officers, to meet his family just 100 metres away.
However, a speeding silver drone approaches and parks close to him, eight armed men clad in black uniform with caps storm out, grab him and bundle him into the vehicle before speeding off to an unknown destination.
Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) Spokesperson, Brig. Flavia Byekwaso last evening told the Daily Monitor that the operation was enforced by joint security forces on allegations of new charges against Ssewanyana.
“There are other charges that he needs to answer and it is not true he has been kidnapped. No one can do that to an MP. The best we do is rearrest. He has been taken to Kireka and he is safe. We would like to assure the public that there is no need for panic.” Byekwaso told the Daily monitor.
However, speaking this morning on Galaxy Fm radio news at 10:50 am, CID spokesperson Charles Twine said he does not have any information on the whereabouts of Ssewanyana.
“I have no information of his arrest, and am saying am also watching it on social media but am going to find out if he is with us and I will let you know,” he said.
Joel Ssenyonyi, the NUP spokesperson says Ssewanyana was definitely arrested and security circles know of his whereabouts.
“If the CID says they don’t know where he is they are either being pretentious or they are confused, there is no coordination, what is clear is the state is holding onto him. If you think that someone has committed an offense, how does the law say, he was kidnapped? If you come to me wielding guns in a mafia-style, people are going to find ways to defend themselves,” he said.
“Yesterday I saw the Information Minister Dr. Chris Baryomunsi saying he was with security. These guys are not civilized in the manner in which they arrest people, so our lawyers are continuing to pursue [the matter].”
Ssewanyana was jointly arrested with Kawempe North MP Muhammed Ssegirinya on September 7, 2021 and taken to Masaka Magistrates Court on charges of murder and terrorism arising from the recent killings of people using machetes in Masaka.
They were remanded and sent to Kigo Government Prison.
But since the court lacked jurisdiction to try the offenses, they had to seek bail before the High Court, which was granted by Lady Justice Victoria Nakintu Katamba on September 20, 2021 on the presumption that they are still innocent unless proven to be guilty.
As part of the conditions, however, the Judge directed the legislators to pay a 20 million Shillings’ cash bail and ordered their sureties to execute a bond form of 100 million Shillings not cash.