The Inspector General of Police General Kale Kayihura has warned Ugandans to stay away from activities of pressure group For God and my Country (4GC).
The IGP’s warning is contained in a statement issued on Wednesday morning in which he states that the group is outlawed since it replaced A4C, which was declared an unlawful society by a Declaration Order, under s 56 of the Penal Code Act.
General Kayihura however maintained that the police has no problem with “anybody organizing demonstrations, as it is a constitutional right and freedom”.
He added that “Police was not notified of these demonstrations, and has not cleared them to take place.”
On Tuesday, 4GC leaders announced that they would resume national protests against the government even Police last week banned all political rallies organized by opposition pressure group.
Addressing journalists at their head quarters in Katonga AGC didn’t specify any particular action to be taken but they requested all Ugandans to do it their own way.4GC members present where Kawempe LCIII chairman Munyangwa, FDC’s Igrid Turinawe, Members of Parliament Hon.Mathias Mpuuga, Hon Muwanga Kivumbi and Hon. Semujju Nganda.
Below is General Kayihura’s statement;
On Tuesday, 25th June 2013, a group calling themselves the 4GC, in a press conference at a location on Katonga Road, announced that they intend to organize demonstrations in Kampala and the whole country, beginning today, 26 June 2013.
While we have no problem with anybody organizing demonstrations, as it is a constitutional right and freedom, such demonstrations, as, indeed, exercise of rights and freedoms, must be within the law. Our problem with the announced demonstrations by 4GC is that they are not within the law.
To begin with, 4GC is unlawful society by virtue of the fact that it replaced A4C, which was declared an unlawful society by a Declaration Order, under s 56 of the Penal Code Act. S. 56(3) states that where a society is an unlawful society, and another society is formed having the same office bearers as the unlawful society, having a similar name, or substantially the same membership, “such society shall be deemed to be an unlawful society”. There is no doubt that A4C and 4GC fall into the category provided for in s. 56(3) of the Act. Therefore, organizing and participating in activities of 4GC constitutes criminal offences. Note that the above part of the Act creates offences of unlawful assemblies, riots, and other offences against public tranquility.
We are aware that, sometime back, members of 4GC took the matter to the Constitutional Court, in Constitution petition No. 41/2012 in which they challenged the powers of the Attorney General to declare unlawful societies under the Penal Code Act. This in itself shows that they acknowledge that s. 56 of the Act is an existing and valid law, only they disagree with it. Accordingly, therefore, they should be consistent and recognize that conducting themselves as 4GC, which was declared an unlawful society under the Act, makes them criminally liable.
Moreover, as is established practice, Police was not notified of these demonstrations, and has not cleared them to take place. We are, also, duty bound to alert the public that we have information that, in fact, what is planned are not, demonstrations as authorized by the Constitution.
Accordingly, therefore, we caution members of the public against this group.
Gen Kale Kayihura
INSPECTOR GENERAL OF POLICE