MBARARA, Uganda: Dr. J.F Barya Tumwesigye is a renowned Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) diehard living in Mbarara district, a staunch anti-government since 1986. He is however in fear for his life and he narrated his life history to the Investigator, attributing all the sorrows to his refusal to join the ruling party.
A professional medical doctor, Barya also operates other side businesses in Mbarara town but he says ever since 1996, most of his businesses have been frozen by government authorities and security organs in the biggest town of west Uganda.
According to his statements, Barya, also known as ‘Freedom’ has not lived to fulfill his desired legacy as he keeps receiving several death threats from security agents, reportedly warning him to either quit the opposition or join his ancestors.
“I first thought these people were jocking but when my son was killed mysteriously, I started living in great fear”, he said. He further explained that his son, Emmanuel Baryamwishaki, in his late 20s, received a phone call at around 7:30pm from an unknown person calling him in Bushenyi town. To his surprise, his son’s body was found dumped in a trench in Bushenyi town, just after about one hour.
Police however recovered the deceased’s phone and managed to get the last dialer who was suspected to know about the death but up to now no positive results have been got concerning the heartless murder.
Police runs silent
Despite Barya’s continuous reports to Police, the latter have always, reportedly kept a deaf ear. Even when he was made to pay for the tracking of his deceased son’s phone records, he is yet to get any promising feedback.
The good Doctor has opened up several cases with different police stations in Mbarara but to not a single result. The cases include one of threatening violence vide SD Ref 14/19/04/15 at Mbarara Police Station, that of arson at Kakoba Police Post on SD Ref 16/10/09/15, criminal trespass and threatening violence on SD Ref 08/08/10/2015 and the one of theft at Kakoba Police Post filed on SD Ref 08/18/03/17.
To his end, Barya says he has instead been warned of how he will follow his son if at all he insists on opposing the government. The doctor says he reported all these threats to Police but they have only ignored him and branded him mad.
Talking to David Ibanda, the regional CID, he promised to handle Barya’s cases until they are settled. “I have not been briefed about doctor’s issues before, but let him come to me so that everything is sorted”, said the detective.
Barya, who looks every inch frustrated said; “since 1976, I have been treating Ugandans in recognized hospitals and I’m sure I have served this nation to my capacity. However my worry is that foreigners have managed to get peace whereas natives like me are being tortured by our own brothers”, he cried.
Barya says in his retirement age, he expected to have a peaceful environment where he could run his businesses without any interference but he has instead had the opposite.
Mbarara Municipal Council ‘grabs’ his land
In 1994, Barya approached the Municipality authorities to approve a plan of his construction site located at Rwizi lane. This was achieved on May 12th 1994 but to his utter surprise, the same authorities later encroached on the land and decided to construct a road through his approved construction area without compensation.
However, Edward Lwanga, the Mbarara Town Clerk, in a phone interview denied the allegations saying there’s no road passing through Barya’s land and called for Barya’s documents that indicated the ownership of the property.
“However much I’m new in this area, there’s no indicator that the Municipal Council encroached on his land, and he can only be compensated if he possess a title of the said land”, added the Town clerk. Lwanga further explains that the road was only constructed on a public land, according to the municipality records.
Barya however says the Municipal Council employees denied him access to process the land on which they later encroached. “These people had already shown interest in this part of land, so they did not allow me to add it on the one I was processing the title for. That’s why they now brag telling me to produce the title” he explained.
Dr. J.F. Barya Tumwesigye simply needs compensation of his land where he says the Municipal council was not even supposed to construct a road and also have the freedom that is entitled to a true Ugandan citizen.