The Mufti of Uganda Sheik Shaban Ramathan Mubajje has called for
the unconditional release of all political prisoners arrested during and after
the 2021 elections.
The Mufti made the remarks on Thursday while speaking to thousands of Muslims
that converged at Gaddafi National Mosque at Old Kampala to celebrate Eid
al-Fitr which marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
Mufti Mubajje, who is also the chairperson of the Inter-Religious
Council of Uganda, says releasing the prisoners can heal the country from the
wounds of the troubled election period.
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Uganda went to the polls on January 14th, 2021 for the election of
the President and Members of Parliament. Incumbent President, Yoweri Kaguta
Museveni won the election with 58 percent of the total votes cast against his
closest rival, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu who garnered 35 percent.
However, several people were picked up by security during campaigns, elections
and after. Several families have also complained about missing relatives. The
National Unit Platform-NUP party has also repeatedly complained about the
kidnap of their members.
According to the list, the majority of the arrested Ugandans are on remand in
Makindye Military Barracks. However, several MPs led by Mathias Mpuuga,
the Masaka Municipality MP have contested the list, saying there are more than
423 political prisoners.
The Mufti also appealed to opposition groups to reconcile with the
government to ensure that the country moves on from politics and concentrate
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Mubajje also asked security agencies to return all motorcycles and
other vehicles that were impounded for violating the curfew.
He said that although the curfew is geared towards preventing the
spread of covid-19 disease, impounding the motorcycles could affect the income of the cyclists.
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Unlike last year when Muslims were not able to congregate for Eid
al-Fitr prayers due to the covid-19 pandemic, this year Muslims turned up in
big numbers to pray.
However, there was no strict observance of the COVID-19 Standard Operating
Procedures- SOPs as the mosque was filled. Many faithful also showed up without
their praying mat and face masks.
Hajj Ramathan Mugalu, Uganda Muslim Supreme Council Secretary-General
also told the congregations that the leadership has intensified plans to unite
the different faction leaders within the Muslim fraternity.
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In Mukono District Khadhi Sheik Sazil Lumala asked members of the opposition
political parties to learn to accept defeat.
Speaking during Eid al-Fitr at Mukono Main Mosque, Sheik Lumala
also called for the release of all political prisoners.
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The Buvuma Deputy District Commissioner Juma Kigongo implored Muslims
to work hard and also educate children as the only way to develop Islam during
this modern generation.