Last week The National Unity Platform launched a fundraising campaign to have Ugandans stranded in the Gulf state detention centers repatriated back home.
Robert Kyagulanyi, the party leader, while speaking to the media last week, said they were obliged to help Ugandans who are languishing in detention centers due to the lack of money to buy tickets to return to Uganda.
However, his fundraising campaign in Dubai was cut short following the cancellation of the concert intended to raise funds for Ugandan returnees.
Speaking to David Lewis Rubongoya, the NUP General Secretary on The Brunch Talk Show at RX Radio, he accused the government of politicizing its humanitarian move to rescue Ugandans suffering in the UAE yet it has had no interventions for the same.
“The regime refused to help these people return. Those that arrived were arrested from the airport and placed in military drones that drove them to taxi parks and told to go straight back to their villages and not to be seen anywhere near Kamwokya or Magere,” he revealed.
He added, “that was unfortunate because these are people that we are bringing back home to put their stories out there so that it can encourage other wellwishers to support the cause to fundraise for the return of others. But having their phones confiscated and listening to their private conversations makes the cause politicized, which we condemn.”
Rubongoya noted that although priority goes to Ugandans first, several Africans from other states stranded in the UAE are part of the fundraising campaign since they recognize Pan-Africanism.
“Gen Museveni and his people love to sing about Pan-Africanism, but in practice, they have nothing to show for it. But for us to believe that people of African decent deserve dignity, then we should engage in such causes, and this is not the first time we are doing so,” he said.
He cited that the NUP tried to partner with other continents during Covid 19 to return Ugandans from countries like China where they were stranded. “Unfortunately, the government denied us landing space, and we could not help them. But if we had the opportunity, we would help as many Africans as possible,” he stated.
Last week the National Unity Platform, through its campaign, transported 41 Ugandans back home. The first batch of 12 arrived last Saturday, with some unable to walk due to the ordeals they experienced while in detention.
The permanent secretary in the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Aggrey Kibenge, said they are aware of the detained Ugandans in the UAE. Kibenge asserted that only 20,000 of more than 100,000 Ugandans in the UAE were transported by registered companies. He added over 80,000 Ugandans in the UAE cannot be accounted for by the government.
Brunch Talk is hosted by Olive Najjuma Monica every Saturday from Midday to 1 pm on RX Radio.