KAMPALA – Sheikh Yahya Mwanje, the deputy Amir of the Jamu’iyyat Dawatil Salafiya –Tabliq has called the entire Muslim community in Uganda to unite, as one of the avenues of ‘fighting’ their enemy.
Sheikh Mwanje, who was abducted on November 28, from outside Nakasero Mosque along Entebbe-Kampala road by plain-clothed security personnel, was released on Monday evening from a CMI detention facility, shortly after MPs under the Muslim Parliamentary caucus had threatened to stage protests if the government continues to hold their members incommunicado.
“I thank whoever added their voices in spreading the gospel about my abduction….I call upon all Muslims in the country to unite…When they took me…they realised that I was clueless. So, I was released…,” said the cleric at Nakasero Mosque on Tuesday, promising to reveal details during this Friday’s – Jumah prayers.
According to video footage released by Shukran Dawah Centre, Sheikh Mwanje was seated outside the mosque, attending to a phone call, when three men in civilian clothes, disembarked from a Toyota Hiace alias drone – surrounding him. One of the mean-looking men is seen grabbing away Sheikh Mwanje’s coat, throwing it to the ground before escorting him up to the waiting the drone.
Sheikh Mwanje regained temporary freedom on Monday shortly after the Muslim parliamentary caucus led by Haj Asuma Basalirwa (MP Bugiri Municipality) demanded his unconditional release or prosecution in court.
Sheikh Mwanje narrated his ordeal during a press briefing at Nakasero Mosque, describing what had happened as ‘Allah’s tests towards His believers.’
He recounted how he was taken to a ‘certain’ destination and that when they found that he had nothing to do with the reason for, which they had taken him, they let him go. He, however, remained tight-lipped on where he was taken, how he was treated, and the reasons he was picked up.
Sheikh Mwanje, who appeared to be in a good mood compared to others who undergo similar circumstances, was grateful to Uganda Muslim Supreme Council and Kibuli Muslim Community, saying that solidarity was what is needed all the time.
“When a problem befalls Nakasero, it has befallen Kibuli and similarly Old Kampala. You might find that the young Muslims at Nakasero are children of those who are at Kibuli,” he said. He called on the Muslim Community to always stay calm whenever faced with a hardship.
Siraj Kifampa – the Spokesperson of the Tabliq sect expressed gratitude that the cleric had been released.
Sheikh Mwanje is one of the suspects facing trial for their alleged involvement in the murder of Maj Muhammad Kiggundu and his bodyguard Sgt Steven Mukasa on November 26, 2016 at Masanafu Trading Centre in Lubaga Division. He had stayed on remand until June 2019 when the International Crimes Division of the High Court granted him a non-cash bail of 20 million Shillings and each of his four sureties executed a noncash bond of Ugx10m. He is jointly charged with Sheikh Muhammad Buyondo alias Matiya and Abdul Wahab Sendegeya both boda boda riders in Kyengera as well as Musa Sekandi alias Masanafu.
Additional reporting by URN