Last month after the Electoral Commission declared the incumbent President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni winner of the presidential elections, protests broke out in Masaka.
Security personnel comprised of the military and police swung into action to stop the growing protests, and accordingly, dozens of people were arrested and four others shot dead.
The Uganda People
Defense Forces-UPDF soldiers of the Armoured Brigade in Kasijjagirwa-Masaka are
on the spot for allegedly torturing suspects arrested in connection to last
Last month after the Electoral Commission declared the incumbent
President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni winner of the presidential elections, protests
broke out in Masaka.
Security personnel comprised of the military and police swung into
action to stop the growing protests, and accordingly, dozens of people were
arrested and four others shot dead.
Some of the suspects who were arrested in the subsequent security
operations accuse security operatives of torturing them while in detention Kasijjagirwa
Jamir Mawanda, the Village Chairperson of Kimyanya B in
Kimanya-Kabonera division of Masaka City is one of the people nursing injuries
inflicted on him by military operatives who arrested him on January 18th.
He narrates that his abductors found him near his home in Masaka
town, bundled him up in a waiting minibus where he met other suspects. They were
later driven to the military barracks at Kassijjagirwa where he spent a week
According to Mawanda, he was accused of mobilizing opposition
politicians and rioters to organise protests. Mawanda who still has bruises on
his body indicates that he was severely whipped with cable wires by the
military operatives who demanded that he reveals to them his entire network.
//Cue in; (Luganda) “n’ebwebankwata
Cue out; ….vva mu bintu.”//
Hakim Kigozi, another victim says that he was detained in the
military detention cell for a week after he had gone to follow up on his
workers who had been arrested in a security operation in garages around Masaka
He indicates that although he was not tortured, he suffered
psychological distress in the hands of the military personnel who locked him
inside a dark-cold room for six days.
//Cue in: “abasajja abo bajja….
Cue out; ….emundu nyingi.”//
Kigozi who is a supporter of the National Resistance Movement-NRM
blames the Armoured Brigade Intelligence Officer Major Fred Kasimoni Mushambo
for acting on false intelligence. He
says that security personnel arrested innocent people who were indiscriminately
picked from their workplaces.
//Cue in: “n’emberamu
Cue out; ….babakuba nyo.”//
But Major Flavia
Terimulungi Mulindwa, the Spokesperson of the UPDF Armoured Brigade
Kasijjagirwa in Masaka, has denied allegations of torture against suspects. She
says their officers conducted joint intelligence-led operations that are
intended to ensure peace and stability in the area. She alleges that
they obtained reports indicating that some groups of people were plotting to
burn down several public infrastructures in their protests.
//Cue in “okuva luli….
Cue out: ….n’ebafuna
Shifa Kateregga, the Executive Director of Human Rights Defenders
Masaka-HURIDEM; local Non-government Organization which advocates for civil
rights says they are compiling a report on similar cases of torture related to
this year’s general election, which they intend to use to hold the authorities
accountable of their actions.