Former presidential candidate and opposition National Economic Empowerment Dialogue (NEED) party president, Joseph Kabuleta has been arrested by plain-clothed men.
The men arrived in the infamous dark 'drone' vehicle and grabbed Kabuleta from his party offices in Bugolobi, Kampala at around 1:00 pm Monday. NEED spokesperson, Moses Matovu said the operatives entered the gate and grabbed Kabuleta from his office while others stayed in the drone.
"They told us he was being taken to the Criminal Investigations Directorate, CID. We followed him at CID but shockingly we were informed that they don’t have him. So currently we don’t know where exactly he is being held,” Matovu said.
Video footage from the CCTV camera at Kabuleta's office shows about six plain-clothed men entering the office building. Four of the men approached Kabuleta who was chatting away with two other men and exchanging pleasantries.
They asked him to escort them while one filmed what was happening using his mobile phone. One of the men could be seen picking Kabuleta's mobile phone before they led him away. The arrest comes shortly after Kabuleta addressed a press conference where he spoke about the recent attacks on security installations and theft of guns in the country.
“We have security issues here, a lot of uncertainties going on here, the president should come out and address the nation on these insecurity problems that are propping up in the country instead of travelling to Vietnam, USA, claiming that he is attracting investors, who can invest here with this uncertainty around?" said Kabuleta before his arrest.
He said the Ugandans should be told whether there is a rebel group that they should be worried about or an insurgency in the East African region.
"These are the issues that we want tackled and now the president should come and tell us. Is there a rebel group that we should be worried about?...[do we have an] insurgency within the central region? If that is the case then they should tells us because we're tired of something being consistent. They attack this situation...now they have attacked this station and there is a consistency going on and yet there is nobody actually addressing it. Not in government, not in opposition, nobody seems to be saying anything about it. And it is a big problem, the elephant in the room. So this is what we're trying to address here today that we have a serious security problem going into this festive season and then police is warning people about driving safely, we have bigger issues than driving safely and ebola. Who's stealing guns?" said Kabuleta.
On November 4, the CID commandant summoned Kabuleta for questioning in vain. According to the police summons, Kabuleta is accused of making tribal-based comments on May 30, 2022. Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson Patrick Onyango declined to comment on the matter and referred our reporter to police spokesperson Fred Enanga, whose phones were unavailable.
Kabuleta's arrest also came hours after unknown men driving a drone picked up Sheikh Ramadhan Mwanja, the former acting Amir of Jamatil Dawatil Salafiya Tablique Community shortly after stepping outside Nakasero Mosque.