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NUP’s Eric Mwesigwa turns against own party, says he was promised sh50m for ‘staged torture’

Mwesigwa also alleges that the opposition party owns a series of drones which they use to abduct their own supporters and keep them in safe houses.

Eric Mwesigwa; the alleged torture victim (L) with Army spokesperson Brig Felix Kulayigye (R)

Eric Mwesigwa, a supporter of the opposition National Unity Platform (NUP) who was recently alleged to have undergone ‘torture’ at the hands of Ugandan security agencies has turned against his own party with a shocking revelation before army officials in a now-gone viral clip.

Mwesigwa, a Boda rider and resident of Nansana, Wakiso district last month appeared before the NUP Principal Mr Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine with ugly wounds on his chest and claimed that the reason for being tortured was because of his support for the Opposition stronghold, and Bobi Wine in particular.

Mwesigwa while narrating his torture ordeal then said “they burnt him with some hot metals on the chest, used metallic pieces to tear his skin, kicked him several times in the chest and stomach, and did other unthinkable things to him,” which Bobi Wine described as the fate of hundreds of our supporters who are regularly abducted.

Eric Mwesigwa (the alleged torture victim)NUP President Bobi Wine when he met with Eric Mwesigwa (the alleged torture victim) two weeks ago (Photo via @HEBobiWine)

However, two weeks since he met with Bobi Wine and the NUP top leadership, Mwesigwa has now trashed any allegations of abductions and torture by Ugandan security agencies as claimed by the opposition party and instead accused the party for stage-managing the torture and abduction with the intent to throw a bad image on the government of Uganda.

The Boda boda rider was Wednesday appearing before a press conference sanctioned by UPDF spokesperson Brig. Kulayigye at the Ministry of Defense and Veteran Affairs headquarters in Mbuya, Kampala.

Mwesigwa says the top leadership of the National Unity Platform party led by Bobi Wine’s security team masterminded his abduction and promised him Shs50 million to be tortured, and further treat his wounds which they have refused to fulfil.

Upon his return from the torture chambers as they planned, Mwesigwa claims he was neglected by the NUP party leadership having achieved their target to malign the government.

He further alleges that NUP also owns a series of drones which they use to abduct their own supporters and keep them in safe houses.

Eric Mwesigwa; the alleged torture victim (L) with Army spokesperson Brig Felix Kulayigye (R)

When approached for a comment on Eric Mwesigwa’s claims, a top NUP official who preferred anonymity to this story said they are not surprised that “he has twisted his statements and the presence of the UPDF spokesperson Brig. Felix Kulayigye at the presser is itself an indicator that everything has been scripted.”

“We are not shocked to see that he’s been forced to say all that. This regime is capable of doing the unthinkable,” the NUP official added.

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Army Speaks out

Speaking at the same press conference, Army spokesperson Brig. Felix Kulaigye confirmed that Eric Mwesigwa was on Feb 13, 2023, paraded before the media by NUP president Robert Kyagulanyi with claims of torture and being burnt on his chest using a flat iron by security operatives.

“However, contrary to the torture narrative by NUP, it has since been established that Mwesigwa Eric was lured into a deal by NUP and the wounds were inflicted on him by the same group after promising him monetary gains treatment with the sole purpose of maligning the Government,” Kulaigye said, adding that “Unfortunately, NUP abandoned him with his wounds without treatment and pay. The Government is providing medical and psycho-social support to Mwesigwa for a full recovery.”

Brig. Kulaigye divulged that Mwesigwa’s scenario follows other similar schemes by NUP to blackmail and isolate the government both locally and internationally.  On November 17, 22, over 100 NUP elements were paraded as “torture victims” at the Uganda Human Rights Accountability conference at Ufungamano House in Nairobi, Kenya.

“It was later established many of the paraded individuals were victims of normal accidents occasioned by Boda-bodas and other incidents.  They included among others Ssebuganda Richard, who lost his hand in a student strike at Makerere University in 2020 and Kamuswaga Moses who was injured trying to detonate a tear gas canister in 2012,” he said.

For a while, Security Forces have noted persistent attempts by some political opposition groups in Uganda to blackmail and demonize Government over false allegations of torture by Security Agencies.

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These elements have embarked on a deliberate campaign to malign the Government and attempted to isolate it at Regional and International fora, as well as among the development partners using the usual rhetoric of human rights abuses and socio-economic challenges.  These evil schemes continue to be propagated through the mainstream and social media platforms and agitations for civil disobedience including the so-called “ Kunga and Tulumbe Campaigns”.

Brig. Kulaigye said that these groups particularly the National Unity Platform (NUP) have over time made it a norm to parade people with bodily defects occasioned by normal accidents to masquerade as victims of torture inflicted on them by security personnel.

“We, therefore, call upon both the local and international media to always resist lending credence to perpetual NUP lies aimed at maligning the government for political gain.  Similarly, the population is encouraged to be mindful of the sustained efforts by negative elements to spread falsehoods and radicalize especially the youth into acts of violence, subversion and civil disobedience, among others,” he cautioned.

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