Kampala – Members of Parliament have reported that they are continuously receiving death threats from individuals disguising themselves as ‘Association of tired officers in Uniform Uganda’ who accuse them of failing to handle issues concerning their welfare.
Tororo District Woman Member of Parliament, Sarah Opendi said that she had received threatening messages from the said association and an individual who identified himself as Congo Bajo warning her as the next target of their wrath.
“I received a letter on my Parliament email from the association of tired officers. It was a notice of engagement about the formation of the association as a result of Parliament’s failure to recognize their service, through improving their welfare, increasing their pay and work environment,” Opendi said.
She said that the association members claim to include, army officers, teachers, police officers and health workers.
Opendi revealed that she was given a seven days’ ultimatum to pay the ‘association’ Shs 10 million lest she faces the consequences of failure to comply.
“I am now left with 2 days from the day of the notice. They said they will determine how to handle the matter the way they were trained. They said they know how to pull the trigger and how to give the right medication,” she said.
Opendi revealed that Congo Bajo warned her watch her moves and that she was the next target.
“These are direct threats to my life; the messages were saying that I am the next target, that I should not take their warnings lightly. Yesterday, I reported to the police but in the evening, I received more messages,” she added.
The Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa said he had received reports about threats to more MPs noting that some threats are related to MPs involvement in the ongoing investigation of the National Council of Sports.
“The one of Sarah Opendi and other MPs is related to the ongoing investigation of National Council for Sports. There are people in sports federations threatening some MPs to go slow on their investigations,” said Tayebwa.
Tayebwa condemned the threats to MPs who he said are mandated to play their oversight role.
“I don’t know whether these people know that oversight is the MPs’ role and whether they know the money they are using is appropriated by MPs,” he said.
The Deputy Speaker tasked the Ministry of Internal Affairs to investigate and apprehend the culprits since they use phones which registered numbers.
“We were told that all non-registered phone numbers were cut off; since Hon. Opendi has brought the number, it means you will know the criminals, or it goes on to say that numbers which are not registered are allowed to operate,” Tayebwa added.
He urged all MPs who have received death threats to report to Parliament’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
The Minister for Security, Jim Muhwezi assured MPs of his ministry’s commitment to bring the culprits to book.
“Government is aware of these threats and Sarah Opendi has shared the messages she received from criminals with me. We would like to assure this House and the country that we will get the culprits,” said Muhwezi.
Similar threats have reportedly been received by Mityana woman MP Joyce Bagala and Makindye East Member of Parliament Derrick Nyeko.
Police said Monday that the joint security agencies have taken up the matter to investigate the source of the anonymous threats.
“As the Joint Security Agencies, we do take matters of threats to life as a priority although at this stage we cannot confirm or deny the authenticity of the anonymous threats. We are still gathering information on the scope of the anonymous threats,” said police spokesperson Fred Enanga.