One hospitalised after security fired explosives in Nwoya

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Mr Stephen Opiyo lays at Anaka General Hospital bed after sustaining an injury from a suspected explosive fired by security personnel in Nwoya District on Thursday.

One person has been admitted after sustaining an injury when police fired at a crowd that had gathered around presidential aspirant, Mr Robert Kyagulanyi in Nwoya District.

Mr Stephen Opiyo, was injured in the right side of the face during a stampede as police diffuse the crowd that was cheering Mr Kyagulanyi who was being denied entry into Anaka town council where he was destined for lodging yesterday (Thursday).

The 22-year-old resident of Lodi village in Purongo sub-county was among the people who had followed the National Unity Platform, Mr Kyagulanyi up to Patira from Amuru and Omoro districts to Nwoya for a campaign rally.

Mr Michael Abal, one of the NUP leaders in northern Uganda said Mr Opiyo was injured at around 7:40pm when police threw an explosive to disperse Mr Kyagulanyi’s supporters.

The injured, according to Mr Abal was rushed to Anaka General Hospital where he was still hospitalised by press time.

 “People were not even protesting. But they were peaceful and eager to see their candidate that they were long waiting for throughout the day and police opted to fire tear gas which accidentally injured our supporters” Mr Abal explained to Kazi-njema News.

An object at the scene of police firing explosives to disperse a crowd.

By press time, Mr Opiyo still lay unconscious at Anaka hospital.

When contacted, the DPC said he was still busy on official duty promising to call back later.

Mr Kyagulanyi had been blocked from holding his campaign rally in Nwoya District after he arrived past time as per the guidelines set by the Electoral Commission (EC).

The NUP president, better known by his stage name as Bobi Wine arrived from Amuru and Omoro districts at 6:05 East African Standard Time (EAST) beyond the EC’s recommended time to hold a rally.

Led by the Nwoya District Police Commander, Mr Filbert Waibi, had already blocked the road using police highway pickup trucks at Patira Junction four kilometres to Anaka town council where Mr Kyagulanyi was also expected to hold his rally.

Mr Waibi told Mr Kyagulanyi that he could not hold the rally since it was past time although the latter pleaded that he was delayed by security personnel who had mounted several roadblocks on the way. 

Kyagulanyi reaches Nwoya in the evening.

The presidential aspirant told the DPC to let him drive off to Anaka town for accommodation.

“I have the right to go and sleep since its past curfew time. Just leave us to go and sleep even at the home of my coordinator,” he insisted.

“It wasn’t my making but it was a deliberate move from the government who frustrated me from holding my rallies and thus affecting my time to meet the people of Nwoya to deliver the message of change to them,” Mr Kyagulanyi added.

One of the objects at the scene of firing in Nwoya.

However, Mr Waibi insisted that it was past time and he could not allow the team to head to Anaka claiming that the area does not have hotel facilities to accommodate them.

 “There is no way you can go to Anaka town council just to sleep because it’s a small place and I don’t think you have such facilities there.”

The NUP team later left towards Gulu city at around 7:30pm after people had started gathering around him. Police fired tear gas to disperse the crowd that was chanting People Power slogan.

Police pickup trucks used to block the road against Kyagulanyi in Nwoya district on Thursday.

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