UGANDA: Why Museveni has renewed empty directive on “idle & disorderly” law
WHY MUSEVENI HAS RENEWED HIS EMPTY DIRECTIVE ON ‘IDLE AND DISORDERLY’ LAW
CHANE OF GUARDS – Uganda’s military dictator has instructed his police chief to release all suspects accused of the offence of Idle and Disorderly. He went further to decree that even those who had been arrested by the City law enforcement arm and convicted to a fine of one million shillings in lieu of imprisonment be released. In response, the figurehead police chief has directed the police Directors and Regional Police Commanders to effect the directive with immediate effect. The same police chief went further to direct the city Executive Director to comply with the directive in regard to those who failed to raise the one million shillings fine and are in prison.
This development clearly manifests the hypocrisy and misuse of power by a military dictator. It is not the first time he is issuing such a directive. In fact he had earlier directed that no one should be arrested and charged with the offence of being ‘idle and disorderly’ but he did not take steps to have the law repealed. Instead his agents of coercion have continued to use the same law for his benefit. Recent times have witnessed the youthful supporters of the opposition People Power platform being rounded up and detained under the Idle and Disorderly law. The People Power platform has been contemplating launching a countrywide fundraising for funds to pay the court fines for its supporters who are in detention. It is in this respect that Museveni has panicked and issued the directive in order to deny credit to the People Power platform.
However, the constitution of Uganda does not give powers to the President to order the release or dropping of charges against anyone who is in police custody. The same constitution does not give the President powers to order the release from prison or setting aside of the court sentence. It only gives him powers to exercise the Prerogative of Mercy by pardoning anyone convicted by court and is serving a sentence after exhausting all avenues of appeal. The figurehead police chief very well knows that the E.D of city council has no role in freeing anyone whom courts of law have already convicted. For those who are still on remand and they are not yet convicted, the President can only influence the DPP to discontinue proceedings because the constitution makes the office of the DPP independent of any directive, including from the President. Interestingly, the Spokesperson of the Prison Services has just told NBS Television that according to their records, there is no single prisoner in their custody on charges of Idle and Disorderly.
Therefore, Museveni’s populist and opportunistic directive is empty and designed to show the judiciary that he is the custodian of justice. Where is the Uganda Law Society, human rights organisations and the legal fraternity??? Where are civil service groups?
See below what we shared in the past.
The offence of being Iddle and Disorderly is one of the strong weapons that African dictatorial regimes use to suppress political dissent and agitation.
To disguise this, the police after arresting the victims they prefer against them criminal charges of being idle and disorderly.
This is the charge that is used on such victims because freedom of assembly and peaceful protests are guaranteed by the constitution.
Otherwise, that law which is only applicable to urban centres will have to remain in place. On the other hand, he may have to rebrand it moreover he already enacted other laws that allow his repressive police to arrest and detain in the name of state security.
INFORMATION IS POWER AND THE PROBLEM OF UGANDA IS MUSEVENISM
—— AUTO – GENERATED; Published (Halifax Canada Time AST) on: October 02, 2019 at 06:45PM