President’s aide storms into newspaper office, threatens journalists

The letter written by Gen. David Sejusa alleging a falling out in high government circles over the question of presidential succession continues to suck more journalists into the eye of the storm.
This (Wednesday) afternoon, Presidential Press Secretary Tamale Mirundi burst into The Observer newsroom over a story [LINK] that said security officers had questioned him over his links to the senior military officer.
“Tamale Mirundi storms our offices for ‘associating him with a sinking man’ [David Sejusa]. Threatens to shoot, arrest & die with someone,” a tweet [link] from The Observer said.
In the story, Mr Mirundi confirms that indeed he was questioned after call logs showed that he had been in touch with Gen. Sejusa aka Tinyefuza, but insisted the matter was “internal”.
According to The Observer Editor Richard Kavuma, Mr Mirundi said the story suggested he was in cahoots with Gen. Sejusa, the co-ordinator of intelligence services currently on a trip outside Uganda even as his claims in a leaked letter to a junior officer continues to roil the political and military waters.
“The definition of ‘internal’ is where we differ,” Mr Kavuma said. “He thought the public didn’t need to know having told us that there was nothing much. He said he has a name to protect and was unhappy about how the story might be perceived.”
The story stems from a letter written by the general and published in the media alleging that an assassination plot is afoot targeting senior government and military officials perceived to be opposed to an alleged plan to have the president’s son succeed him in State House.
Already, three Daily Monitor journalists may be charged in court for refusal to divulge information in their possession about the same letter. Police continued interrogation of the journalists for a second day on Wednesday.
A livid Mr Mirundi said the story is false and only aims at “implicating me” in the Gen. Sejusa saga.
“These people have written a bad story,” he said.
He claimed that the journalists are being used by security forces and his enemies to bring him down.
“You write about me, I come to you,” said Mr Mirundi, adding that he has been quiet for too long about many “false stories” running in the media.
“I will kill one of you,” he threatened.

Grace Natabaalo

Grace Natabaalo is a programme assistant at the African Centre for Media Excellence.

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