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    Museveni And The Fight For The Soul Of Police…

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    As UPDF is busy smoking out the ADF terrorists in the jungles of Congo, President Yoweri Museveni is initiating a fresh tidying up of the methods of the Police and security organs in the way they handle and interact both with the masses and criminal elements.

    Of great interest in his cleanup strategy is to rid the forces of any traces of application of torture as a means to extract confessions from suspects in custody.

    In official communications to security chiefs he described torture as “traditional” and “unnecessary and wrong and must not be used again if it was being used as I see some groups claiming in the media”.

    By traditional, the president elaborates that the use of torture on suspected criminals (okutatsya) in the fight against crime was not only commonly used in our traditional societies but was accepted and encouraged. Yet like other traditional practices that had their own mistakes, and such ideas not in consonance with logic should be abandoned.

    In an enlightened world where investigators are equipped with top notch skills of evidence gathering and the availability of modern gadgets like the now famous CCVTs, who needs torture? It is extra to necessity and a grim reminder of how far set we are from the old and troubled Uganda of pre-1986.

    The UPDF’s presence in Congo was not informed by vague information extracted from captured terrorists; it was informed by accurate intelligence and leads from years of one clue leading to another until the climax during last year’s Kampala bombings that left no doubt as to who had been terrorising Ugandans all along. That is why the army’s presence in Congo is justified and accurate even in its precision on where to hit and how. It’s why the Congolese Government willingly partnered in the operations. Was the Congolese government tortured to make that move? No! They understand our methods and trust them. Ugandans should, the better, trust Museveni with his methods even when, sometimes, they seem slow.

    Apart from expressly barring the use of torture, the president wants security organs (police) to be most humane in managing public gatherings and using proper methods of arresting suspects or subduing them in case they are resisting arrest by, for example, overpowering them, and handling them, while in custody. The basis for his move is the “fundamental starting point of the NRA principle of being an army of the people, but also serving well the law-abiding foreigners that visit Uganda”.

    The president is considerate to the extent that he bars security personnel from beating or pushing back people using their open palms, barking at them and, much less, applying tools of coercion on them when they are not endangering anybody’s life, or property. He advises politely restraining them and getting them to cooperate with law and order managers who are their “brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, uncles, aunties, cousins, in-laws, friends, etc”.

    The president calls for strict adherence with the law and UN guidelines on the use of force and urges law-abiding Ugandans to take note of and support these measures because they are for their own good. I trust that if his guidance is taken seriously, we are going to see a better, pro-people police force that can independently fight crime and win the confidence of law-abiding Ugandans.

    So far so good as far as the President’s heart and mind goes! Amidst this mindset and operational reform and improvement in policing and civil-security relations, there stands something I could call the elephant in the room. This animal is unacknowledged by those who benefit from its presence while others appear to underestimate its influence on the security status at play. That is the role of spoiler groups that call themselves opposition but are, rather, selfish and sadistic actors without regard to the general tranquility and individual wellbeing of Ugandans, but while pretending to care and fight for their rights.

    These actors are mainly in the political arena, using the cover of free democratic practice to create a semblance of anarchy and total absence of civil rights in Uganda. They do this by failing to live up to standards as law-abiding players in national affairs and competitors with NRM who can win and lose some, and become anarchists looking to plunge the country into total turmoil from which they have the luxury of detaching themselves to go and be with their foreign sponsors. Without naming who, I know most Ugandans know these actors of illwill. They must stop abusing the conscience and reasonability of Ugandans, and playing on the minds of donors who bankroll their evil activities of hoodwinking citizens and setting them up in provocative situations with security and wish each other to cause bloodshed!

    Yes, sometimes mistakes happen in policing operations but those are typically operational and isolated and usually the responsible officers are held accountable. Even then, the violations do not happen out of the blue; they happen when those caught in those situations defy instructions of police in a way that communicates an active motive to both challenge authority and harm the lives and property of Ugandans.

    If anybody is unfairly treated, as happens world over, there is always a way for redress but the cure is for those who need their rights respected and protected to respect the rights of others and know their limits and portion in building a country that is safe and works for all.

    As a side note: Constitutionally, the President is the Commander-In-Chief (C-I-C) of the UPDF. Most people take it that he is the C-I-C of (all) armed forces including police and prisons. For the sake of Bazzukulu’s understanding, given his long established yearning to reform all armed forces and how they relate with citizens, what is at stake if he simply becomes C-I-C of all armed forces? Could police’s problems have to do with the “indirect” nature of command that the president has with the force?

     

    Faruk Kirunda is the Deputy Presidential Press Secretary
    Contact: faruk.kirunda@statehouse.go.ug
    0776980486/0702980486

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    CRIME

    NO MORE MERCY: Shoot And Kill Them – Security Bosses Adopt Policy On Fighting Armed Robbers…

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    Some of the police bosses who attended the meeting today

    Security agencies have vowed to take a tougher shoot to kill policy against armed robbers.

    The shoot to kill policy was agreed upon today in a security meeting in Mukono Municipality between Uganda Police, Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF), local leaders and the residents of Mukono Municipality.

    The order Follows a rise in armed robberies in the Kampala Metropolitan area.

    “We are going to kill them. I’m not used to these things of writing statements. We shall shoot them and then investigate where they got the gun from. You have to kill these thieves,” UPDF’s Lt. Col. Fred Mwesigye said.

    Edward Ochom, the police Director in Charge of Operations warned, “These robbers have their agents. They are here, I know it. We are discussing Security (and) they want to hear what we are saying. But, if you are their agent, take the message, their days are numbered. We are not going to sympathise with them anymore, enough must be enough.”

    Early this week, Flying Squad Unit and Mukono Police arrested two suspects, highly linked to the aggravated robbery of Spice Supermarket, located at ku Ssatu, in Namubiru ward, Mukono Central Division in Mukono Municipality on June 25th, 2022.

    Spice Supermarket in Mukono which was robbed at gun point

    “The two suspects were sighted on the eve of the robbery, while drinking at Cloud 9 bar, near the supermarket. They include Mugalu William, a 24-year-old resident, of Nasuuti cell, Ntawo ward, Mukono Central and Mbogo Sam, a 23-year-old, resident of Nasuuti cell, Ntawo ward, Mukono municipality. They were clearly identified by one of the witnesses who clearly saw them escaping from the scene,” police mouthpiece Fred Enanga said.

    He added, “We are now working towards the recovery of the gun and identifying other members of the gang, who appear to be an amateur group. Such groups are usually desperate, panicky more high risk and willing to use violence.

    “They shot a bullet through the computer, which injured Ssekandi Irene, through the stomach and exited from the back. We wish her quick recovery. A team of counsellors from CID Headquarters has been dispatched to offer counselling services to the victim.”

    Enanga warned that even though attacks on supermarkets have not been so regular, police is anticipating more retail crimes on supermarkets, mobile money points, retail shops and markets due to high levels of unemployment among the youth, use of drugs, change in criminal tactics, where robbers attack softer targets with lesser security, such as supermarkets and the opportunity of get-away.

    Yesterday, the Directorate of Crime Intelligence and Flying Squad Unit recovered a motor vehicle registration number UAD 728Y, a dark grey Toyota Corolla, which was parked at Ham Mukasa-Nasuti junction.

    Upon searching the boot of the vehicle, the scene of crime officers found a sub machine gun loaded with three live ammunition that were wrapped in a yellow polythene sack.

    “The team also found four sharp pangas, a sharp steel knife, two pairs of scissors, two pairs of pliers and two screw drivers. Other equipment that is used in breaking-in were also found in the car. Our teams also recovered items of different types of electronics, which are suspected to be stolen,” ASP Luke Owoyesigyire, the Deputy PRO Kampala Metropolitan Police said.

     

    By Grapevine Reporter

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    NATIONAL

    You Will Hide, Run Until You Cannot Sustain Your Lie – Parliament Boss Obore In War Of Words With Journalist Who Leaked Speakers’ Car Documents…

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    Chris Obore (R) and Agather Atuhaire (L)

    The director of communications at Parliament, Chris Obore has responded to Civic Space TV journalist, Agather Atuhaire who says that her life is in danger after exposing documents showing the purchase of luxury cars for the Speaker and her deputy.

    Through her social media platforms, Atuhaire broke the story of how Parliament planned and executed the procurement of luxury cars for Speaker Anita Among and her deputy Thomas Tayebwa.

    Atuhaire, through a Twitter Space hosted by the African Institute for Investigative Journalism (AIIJ), which is owned by renowned journalist Solomon Sserwanja, says her life is in danger, and she is now in hiding.

    “After breaking the story, I got information from my sources at Parliament saying that I could be in danger and that they were trying to find out how I got the information,” Atuhaire said.

    “Many of them could not even talk to me over the phone, they came in person and told me that they were looking for something that they could use against me,” she added.

    She further noted that she felt threatened and to make matter worse, she was being addressed informally.

    “My team sent a letter to Parliament to inform them that I am available if they want to question me, but the letter has since gone unanswered,” she explained.

    However, Obore told Atuhaire that parliament as as an institution does not respond to a journalist whose desire is to seek attention.

    “She will hide herself, run and run. Talk about being threatened. Get nice comments on social media. Until she cannot sustain the lie and life moves on,” Obore said.

    Atuhaire warned Obore to stop maligning her behind her back.

    She shared some messages from Obore allegedly telling some people that she wants money from NGOs, that is why she is concocting the harassment narrative.

    “Agarther came to the Speaker looking for a job. She was told the existing jobs were for PAs only. She also wanted the Speaker to compel LDC to graduate her. She flatly said she had no powers. Later agarther speaks like she is the Angel. Let her not force us to speak what we don’t want to. We have cctv cameras at parliament. Tell Agather not to look for limelight as a journalist,” some of the messages that Agather shared allegedly from Obore read.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    NATIONAL

    MPs Ssegirinya And Ssewanyana Lawyers To Run To Constitutional Court For Interpretation On Right To Bail…

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    MPs Muhammad Ssegirinya (R) and Allan Sewanyana (L)

    The Court of Appeal today dismissed the petition filed by Kawempe North Legislator Muhammad Ssegirinya and Makindye West legislator, Allan Sewanyana challenging the High Court decision to deny them bail.

    Court of Appeal Justices Cheborion Barishaki, Christopher Madrama and Eva Luswata declined to hear the duo’s argument on their constitutional right to bail, arguing that the MPs are barred by law pending their trial on charges of murder

    During court, the state reasoned that the bail granted to the two legislators has not been violated because they are in prison in regards to another case in which they were denied bail by the Masaka High Court.

    They further noted that it makes no sense to have the two MPs released based on the file where they were granted bail by the Masaka High Court yet there is another file where court declined to grant bail.

    They divulged that this would mean they will be re-arrested over the other case file where they were not granted bail.

    After the ruling, Shamim Malende, the lawyer representing the jailed legislators said that her legal team is going to the Constitutional Court for interpretation of Articles 28(3) (a) and 23 on the right to liberty and presumption of innocence.

    The international crimes division also refused to grant them bail saying they are in lawful custody and have pending charges but the court however condemned how they were arrested.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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