Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Several campaign posters of opposition candidates were removed from the stands in different parts of Masaka as President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni went to campaign in the area.
The affected posters are those of opposition politicians that include presidential, parliamentary and local government candidates that had been put up in the different junctions of Masaka district.
At the junction of Total highway in Nyendo and Kijjabwemi roundabout, both located on the Mbarara-Masaka bypass, many opposition candidates campaign posters that had been put up were replaced with those of National Resistance Movement-NRM’s presidential candidate Yoweri Museveni who begun his two-days campaign tour in the greater Masaka district on Wednesday.
Julius Musaazi, the National Unity Platform coordinator for Kayirikiti zone, in Nyendo-Mukungwe division of Masaka city says all their campaign posters they had placed on the main roads into Masaka town were vandalized and many taken away by unknown people.
He says that the campaign posters were removed at night and accordingly replaced with President Museveni’s portraits and yellow burners.
According to him, besides the NUP presidential and parliamentary candidates, even other opposition politicians had their posters removed or badly defaced.
Joyce Nabunya, a shop attendant at Total-Nyendo taxi stage suspects that the posters were removed during curfew hours in the night, arguing that the posters were intact before they closed their businesses last night.
She indicates that posters of all candidates regardless of their political affiliations have for quite some time been placed close to their premises, wondering why anybody could find time to destroy them, something that breeds consternation among local supporters.
But Jessy Mutagubya and Ephraim Kasozi, with other opposition activists in Masaka town have told URN that they are not moved by the removal of the posters, saying they will replace them after President Museveni’s departure from the area.
They have challenged police to arrest and charge the culprits, arguing that such actions abuse the principles of democratic participation.
Meanwhile, while addressing the NRM campaign meeting in Mpigi on Tuesday, the party’s Vice Chairperson in charge of Buganda, Godfrey Kiwanda Ssuubi also decried the continued defacing of their campaign posters in the different parts of the country, and called upon the security agencies to take action against the culprits.
Enoch Abaine, the greater Masaka Regional Police Commander when contacted to comment about the incidences said he needed time to study the reports before he could speak about them.