Despite the tight police presence, it was a surprise to many that the banned opposition group 4GC (acronym for For God and My Country), was allowed to hold a rally at Nyendo Public School in Masaka on Saturday.
However, when former FDC President Dr Kizza Besigye took to the podium to address gathering, the now anxious police instructed the organisers to end the rally immediately. Sensing danger, Besigye pressed on with his speech, while the MPs who had called the meeting, tussled with Southern Region Police Commander Maxwell Ogwal.
Busiro East MP Medard Lubega Sseggona asked for more time and Ogwal conceded, giving the gathering 30 more minutes.
The meeting was organised by Masaka Municipality MP Mathias Mpuuga, who invited MPs Sseggona, Gerald Karuhanga (Youth Western), Moses Kasibante (Lubaga North), Florence Namayanja (Bukoto East) as well as Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago and FDC strongwoman Ingrid Turinawe.
In his speech, Besigye vowed to press on with his campaign against the Museveni government.
"Some people are asking whether I'll stand against (President) Museveni in the coming elections but I assure you that this will not happen because Museveni will be no more by 2016," Besigye said amidst cheers.
He asked Masaka residents to drop their fear and ensure that President Museveni's government quits before 2016 general elections.
"Those who still think that this government holds any respect are mistaken and it is just a matter of time for you to see it falling like that of [Muammar] Gadaffi, Hosni Mubarak and others. In fact he will go like Saddam Hussein," Besigye said.
He repeated an old pledge that Masaka residents would see Museveni leave power.
"I don't make empty promises and I'm very sure that you will see him going," Besigye said. "The only difference is that he may not go peacefully as I had earlier thought."
Earlier, Mpuuga told youths to prepare to join him in fighting the recently passed Public Order Management bill. However, the loudest applause was reserved for Ingrid Turinawe, when she led the gathering in a song, implicating the government in the Kasubi tomb fire and Kichwamba massacre.
"Museveni has felt the strength of our campaign and the only option he is left with is to stop us from talking to the public. This will not happen because we have our rights which we are ready to fight for," Turinawe said.
Lukwago expressed disappointment that most Ugandans chose to keep quiet as a few individuals continued to play with the country's dignity and taxpayers' money.
"When you see an old man playing around with young girls in public, just get to know that he is used up ... that is the trend we are seeing," Lukwago said.