Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, Maj. Gen Kahinda Otafiire, has called on Ugandans to drag their government to court in case it unconstitutionally blocks them from demonstrating their grievances.
Gen. Otafiire made revelation at the commemoration of constitution day meeting held under the theme Severity of people, rights, duties and responsibilities of stakeholders at Sheraton hotel.
His remarks proceeded police’s disruption of various processions organised by opposition political actors expressing their dissatisfaction over some government decisions. Referring to public order manager act (POMA), police has always blocked individuals from carrying out any demonstration without authorization.
With this law that came into force in 2010, for anyone to carry out any demonstration, he/ she has to petition police with clear intention before he is given green light.
“If people want to demonstrate, let them do. There are rules governing demonstrations and don’t destroy public property. If the government stops you unconstitutionally, take it to court,”
He however, said that he feels insulted when people refer to the 1995 constitution as the Museveni constitution. “This is a constitution discussed and agreed upon by the people of Uganda,”
“There are things we put in the constitution that I did not agree with but I had to respect the decision of the majority but we put provisions for amendment in the constitution and parliament is empowered to do. If the laws are bad, change the law makers just like my people threw me out of parliament,”
The dialogue that attracted politicians and individuals was organised by Uganda Human Rights Commission. In the meeting, Democratic Party president general Norbert Mao called on stakeholders to empower Ugandans through civic education to establish their relevancy in the democratic dispensation.