THE STATE OF THE RULE OF LAW

The wave of brutality meted out on nominated Presidential candidates at the nomination Centre

Human rights abuses have hit a record low due to the volatile political environment due to the impending elections compounded by Covid 19 pandemic. On November 2nd and 3rd of 2020, during the Presidential nomination process at the Kyambogo nomination centre, there were reports of the brutality that was meted out on two presidential nomination candidates, Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi as well as Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) Presidential Aspirant, Engineer Patrick Amuriat, who were both arrested in the process of being nominated as Presidential Candidates.

In a statement issued on November 4, 2020, the ULS condemned1  the unfairness as well as disproportionate and selective enforcement of the Covid 19 Standard Operating procedures and guidelines during the nomination process. The ULS is therefore concerned about how the SOPs are being used to perpetuate  human  rights  violations.2        Important  to note is that during the scuffle, several people sustained serious  injuries  with  other  civilians  across  different parts of the country being admitted in hospitals arising from the similar incidents of high . It should be made mandatory for all security forces to observe the precepts of the law at all times and respect human rights and freedoms in the performance of their functions.

Legal Observations:

•     Whether the security forces follow due process while arresting and dispersing crowded areas?

•      Whether the sanctity of the Independent Electoral Commission per Article 60 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda was not defiled in the wave of the brutality meted out on some of the presidential candidates during the presidential nomination process.

Recommendations:

Image removed.The ULS recommends an independent enquiry, investigation into and redress of the disproportionate application of nomination procedures as well as the abuse of due process during the presidential candidates’ nomination exercise.

1   Mosese Mulondo, Security whisk away Kyagulanyi after nomination,New Vision, November 4, 2020. Page 5

2 Nicholas Wassajja, FDCs Amuriat whisked to nomination centre shoeless,New Vision, November 4, 2020. Page 4