Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), one of the leading opposition political parties in Uganda have turned down an invitation to be part of the third ordinary Inter-Party Organization for Democracy (IPOD) Summit meeting that will be chaired by National Resistance Movement Chairman Yoweri Museveni, this Friday, at Kololo Independence Grounds.
Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda, the FDC spokesperson said that their party President Patrick Amuriat is yet to write to IPOD highlighting FDCs reasons to excuse itself from the meeting.
But Ssemujju made no secret of the reasons, key among them is the mistreatment their President and former Party flag bearer Patrick Oboi Amuriat was subjected to during the just ended presidential campaigns.
“FDC party President Amuriat Oboi was tortured during the campaigns and is not in the right sense of mind to meet his tormentor. Our interaction with Museveni has made us come to the conclusion that FDC has taken”, said Ssemujju.
He further adds that IPOD has gone against the reasons why it was started, adding that the organization has been turned into a social club where you go, sit and feel good.
He however, noted that the decision is by FDC as a party urging that they don’t prohibit other parties from taking part in the summit.
We envy nobody. We know there are some of our colleagues who want to sit with our tormentor. We received the invitation but we declined this meeting, he says.
The Kira Municipality legislator further explained that it would be unfair to the party supporters and other Ugandans in general for FDC to have a dialogue with Museveni when there are so many other human rights abuses in the country, endless abductions and illegal detention of Ugandans.
Meanwhile, the ruling NRMs Secretary General, Justine Kasule Lumumba said that, for FDC to refuse the invitation, its being unrealistic not only to the IPOD values but also to Ugandans.
She said that given the fact that Uganda is under multi-party politics, IPOD is a body where political parties are meant to dialogue and share issues that affect Ugandans and that FDC declining to attend it would be doing a disservice to Ugandans.
“I would request FDC to come, and they raise the issues they have. FDC are the dominant opposition party in Uganda, don’t run away from your responsibilities. Come and expose us,” says Lumumba.