Acholi opposition MPs defy boycott of Parliamentary sittings

While we agreed to boycott Plenary Sittings over the Human Rights situation in the Country, MP Akol Anthony stands out as the lone Opposition Member siding with the oppressor.

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A section of Opposition legislators from Acholi sub-region have defied the ongoing plenary boycott by their colleagues and attended the House sitting.

Led by Leader of Opposition (LOP) Mathias Mpuuga, members from different Opposition Political Parties on Thursday last week walked out of parliament in protest of reported torture of citizens by security operatives, detention without trial, and missing supporters.

Those who walked out are from the biggest Opposition party, the National Unity Platform (NUP), Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Uganda People’s Congress (UPC), Democratic Party (DP) and Justice Forum (JEEMA).

Mpuuga then said that his members would be out of parliament sittings for two weeks, also demanding that those responsible for torture should be arraigned before court.

However, the Kilak North MP, Anthony Akol was today seen on the floor of parliament making submissions to different issues contrary to a pronouncement made to the Media last week by the official Opposition in parliament.

It prompted LOP Mpuuga to issue a short statement on social media platforms accusing Akol of going against the Opposition position to attend plenary.

“While we agreed to boycott Plenary Sittings over the Human Rights situation in the Country, MP Akol Anthony stands out as the lone Opposition Member siding with the oppressor. We shall know them by their actions!” reads Mpuuga’s statement about the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party MP.

When contacted by Uganda Radio Network- URN, MP Anthony Akol said that there are matters concerning his voters that he needed to address on the floor of parliament.

“The Leader of Opposition lacks focus,” said Akol. “I and the Woman MP of Amuru, Akello Lucy consulted him that we have issues of Acholi sub-region in the House; Apaa land issue, Cattle Rustling and the issue of Rt. Hon Jacob Oulanyah.”

He added that he had attended the House to address issues of his voters in Apaa who elected him.

According to Akol, his request for him and other MPs from Acholi to attend plenary had been declined by Mpuuga.

“So, whatever name he wants to call me, I don’t mind,” Akol said. “I am in Opposition by choice and nobody can push me to NRM. My bosses are my voters who are in prison in greater number, in IDP camps. When he refused, I and Hon. Lucy are in the House and many others.”

Akol, doubles as Acholi Parliamentary Group Chairperson.

A copy of the order paper for 8th Tuesday, February has statements by Ministers regarding government’s interventions to address incidents of cattle rustling in Acholi sub-region, Status of the Value Addition Facility at Busia Border Post, Human Wildlife Conflict and Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) Handling of Fires in National Parks that affect Activities neighboring National Parks.

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