The National Unity Platform spoke yesterday about the parliamentarians’ arduous journey to freedom and revealed the details of negotiations that could have resulted in their release on Monday.
Joel Ssenyoni, the NUP’s spokesperson, told this Website last evening that the party’s attorneys and unnamed MPs played important roles.
“for over the past one-and-a-half years have been pursuing for [MPs] freedom through all the legal channels especially in the courts of law.”
“This was not going to be very easy, remember when we were pursuing for the freedom of Nubian Lee and other colleagues, it also took months but eventually they got freed,” Mr Ssenyonyi said.
He added: “This is the same story with this one, including exerting pressure in parliament and elsewhere and yesterday [Monday] they were granted freedom.”
Several sources, including people involved in and/or briefed on the negotiations, told this website on Monday that Mathias Mpuuga, the leader of the opposition, Anita Among, and Thomas Tayebwa, the deputy speaker, all played important roles.
NUP speaks out on Mpuuga
NUP leaders claim that despite Mr. Mpuuga and other chosen opposition figures participating in negotiations with the government, he did not engage in quiet shuttle diplomacy.
Mr Ssenyonyi, in an interview with Daily Monitor last evening said: “Of course we began to see allegations of [negotiations]; there were deals that were cut involving [some leaders].”
“The LOP has denied that… Therefore, until any new information surfaces, we can’t believe [that there were deals] otherwise, as far as we are concerned, lawyers have done their work in pursuing their (MPs) freedom.”
He added: “So, issues of negotiations, we don’t know but if there is anyone who was involved in the negotiation deal, maybe they should speak out and tell us what kind of deal this was. What was given or promised in exchange for freedom?”
Mr. Ssenyonyi disclosed that the party had made the decision not to pay attention to the ongoing behind-the-scenes discussions.
“What we are focusing on now is the wellbeing of our colleagues, they need treatment so that they can get back to normalcy after having been in jail for a year and a half,” he said.
The security meeting that Mr. Tayebwa called in his office was not a secret, according to further sources close to the LoP’s office, because five other opposition leaders were present.
The discussion included kidnappings and the lack of justice for NUP members who were allegedly awaiting trial in various prisons.
After serving a combined total of 524 days—roughly 17 months—in prison, the pair were freed on Monday.
They were charged with being responsible for the string of killings in the Masaka Sub-region that claimed the lives of roughly 26 locals between March and June 2021.
They were accused of everything from assisting and abetting terrorism to terrorism, murder, and attempted murder.