There is heightened security at parliament, a day after two members of the Red Top Brigade jumped from the stranger’s gallery to the floor of the house protesting corruption.
Military men have been deployed at the two gates of parliament to beef security. Visitors accessing parliament at the main gate and eastern gates opposite the National Theater are being screened thoroughly before they are allowed in or turned away.
Both visitors and staff without proper identification cards are also being turned away. Those with luggage are also checked thoroughly before being allowed in the precincts of the house. Two members of Uganda Parliamentary Press Association were turned away by security because of Identity cards.
One of the gates that previously had two police officers to check visitors now has five. In total there is an estimated 20 security officers at each of the gates. URN saw a visitor who had come to visit a member of parliament and was asked by security to call him to pick him up.
Hellen Kaweesa, the Acting Director Communications at Parliament told URN that the heightened security is expected because of what happened on Wednesday. She says there is need for extra vigilance because of the raid by the Red Top Brigade members.
On the case of the journalists, she says they were turned away just like any other person without proper identification. Journalists are issued with accreditation tags, which they are expected to carry all the time while accessing the house.
Mario Obiga Kania, the Internal Affairs State Minister confirmed the heightened security at parliament.
“Parliament must remain a people’s institution, but at the same time it should remain secure. So obviously having an incidence like yesterday necessitates a review of the security. I cannot say what format they will take, but it should be adequate so that parliament is accessible but at the same time secure,”Kania told URN on phone.