The defense attorney for Ugandan General David Sejusa is demanding answers from the government after the renegade general was placed under house arrest Friday.
Attorney Ladislaus Rwakafuzi said he was prevented from seeing Sejusa by military personal at the general's home. He also said he plans to challenge the administration’s decision to place his client under house arrest.
“We need to hear from government as to why they are keeping him. And if they state that they have placed him under house arrest then we shall challenge that as being unlawful. But, if they did not state so, we can still challenge it because he himself does not need that protection and he has said so in very clear words,” said Rwakafuzi.
The government has denied placing Sejusa under house arrest saying the military was at his home to protect him.
“They claim that they are reinforcing his security because they have learnt that he is insecure and that is why they have deployed heavily in and outside his house,” said Rwakafuzi.
He said the administration would be committing an illegal act if officials were to admit that Sejusa has been placed under house arrest.
“Our law does not envisage house arrest. Arrests must be done in a known place of detention. So house arrests are not allowed under our laws. That’s why they are refusing to admit that they have indeed put him under house arrest,” said Rwakafuzi.
The defense attorney said Sejusa is seeking to be discharged from the army following his recent return from a self-imposed exile.
Supporters of the government say his demand for the removal of President Yoweri Museveni, the commander in chief of the army, is a treasonable offence since Sejusa has yet to be officially discharged from the army.
But Rwakafuzi said Sejusa’s political statements should not be held against him.
“He is entitled to making those statements because the constitution allows him. He is not excluded from making political statements, and he has always expressed his desire to leave the army since 1995. He wants to leave the army so that he can actively participate in politics. So, they should not hold it against him, because he has always wanted to leave the army,” said Rwakafuzi.
Sejusa went into exile after demanding an investigation into an assassination plot linked to President Museveni’s alleged succession plan, under which the president would step down and hand over power to his son, Brigadier Muhoozi Kainerugaba.
Sejusa petitioned the administration to investigate rumors of a plot to assassinate senior administration officials opposed to the plan.
The army rejected Sejusa’s claims and accused him of breaching an official code of conduct. He was also accused of leaking his petition to the press after a newspaper published the contents of the letter demanding the inquiry.