By Kabuye Ronald
Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine’ led opposition political party, the National Unity Platform (NUP) has turned down request by the Executive Secretary of Inter Party Organization for Dialogue (IPOD) to join it.
IPOD membership is made of all political parties that have representation in parliament, though joining is by choice not mandatory.
According to the letter dated 2nd September 2021 to the Executive Secretary IPOD authored by NUP Secretary General David Lewis, it asserts that the NRM regime uses the organization for its political gains which is far from the intended objective of strengthening Uganda’s Multi-party democracy. Adding that the past 10 years of IPOD’s existence, democratic space has only shrunk going from bad to worse every successive year.
Lewis said in their assessment they cannot be part of a forum where party heads meet for a cup of tea and photo opportunity but serious discussion about the country’s future are denied audience.
“We have taken time to study the discussion that have taken place in IPOD overtime. In our assessment, the regime has turned it into a forum in which party principals meet for a cup of tea, followed by a photo opportunity. Serious discussions about the future of our country have been denied audience within the platform! The National Unity Platform is not keen on taking part in an exercise which is used as a facade to legitimize an otherwise illegitimate rule.” Reads the letter in parts
“The National Unity Platform yet again expresses its utmost commitment to genuine dialogue based on the principals of fairness, mutual respect, impartiality and transparency. A dialogue in which the people of Uganda can feel sufficiently represented! We do not feel that IPOD in its present form offers that opportunity.
Once the issues raised here and those raised in our previous meetings are attended to, we shall be glad to formally join the platform” it further read.
NUP is the current leading opposition party with the most members of parliament from opposition hence its absence might affect the organization.