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Respect Uganda’s sovereignty – Foreign Affairs minister tells EU Parliament

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Minister Sam Kutesa

The Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kutesa has urged the European Union (EU) Parliament to respect Uganda as sovereign state and ensure non-interference in its democratic processes.

Last week European Parliament Chaired by President David Sassoli, passed a number of resolutions after the debating of Uganda’s 2021 post-election report. The MPs reiterated that sanctions against individuals and organisations responsible for human rights violations in Uganda must be adopted under the new EU human rights sanction mechanism, the so-called EU Magnitsky Act

The EU report indicates that the election process was marred with massive irregularities including state inspired violence, intimidation and harassment of my supporters and arbitrary arrest and detention of presidential candidates.

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In a letter to the President of the European Parliament, Kuteesa said EU’s resolutions are undermining Ugandan institutions such as the courts of law and the Electoral Commission. “The statement is a mockery of the rule of law which the EU stands for, and an attempt to influence the outcome of the ongoing court process.”

“The relations between Uganda and the EU are both historical and strong. As a country, we acknowledge and value the partnership with the EU as a bloc and with individual member states. Nonetheless, we strongly believe that the sustenance of the relationship depends on upholding of the universally accepted principles of mutual respect, non-interference and respect for sovereignty,” he said

“This statement is partisan in tone and intent. We see this as an attempt to undermine and challenge the Electoral Commission and its work. The statements are unfortunate at a time when the matter was still before the court which will determine the validity of the elections.”

He retaliated that former Presidential candidates Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu of the National Unity Platform (NUP) and Patrick Oboi Amuriat of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) chose to defy all the standard operating procedures set by the Ministry of health and that is why they were arrested.

“These two repeatedly told or intimated to their supporters that COVID-19 was a hoax, incited them and willingly breached  the SOPs, organizing mass rallies, thereby putting the lives of everyone, not just themselves and their supporters, at risk in the middle of a pandemic” he said.

He said  following the arrest of Kyagulanyi, there was a pre-planned and funded riot in which his supporters engaged in robbery, mounting of illegal roadblocks, assaulting innocent people and attacks on security personnel in Kampala which resulted into arrests.

“The Government is on record as stating that the incidents of November 2020 were regrettable and will continue to be investigated with a view to determining conclusively if and where operational mistakes were made by individual security personnel thereby unlawfully causing death in particular cases,” he said.



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Source – Eagle Online

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