Saturday, May 29, 2010

HRNJ-Uganda want Kakooza Mutale Punished for torturing a journalist

By HRNJ-News Team
Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) condemns in the strongest term possible the arrest and torture of the Ggwanga New Paper editor Moses Kasibante.

Mr. Kasibante was arrested and tortured on 25th/May/2010 by Kalangala Action Plan Operatives in a numberless vehicle during the Mukono North by-election while at district headquarter polling station. The operatives confiscated his identity card and other valuable items.

“I was arrested by plain clothed gun-wielding men who forced me into a numberless Toyota Prado which whisked me away. After few minutes of my arrest, I found myself detained in a safe house in Mukono with a yellow gate where I spotted a yellow bus which resembled the one commonly used by Kalangala Action Plan” Kasibante said. While in detention he was ill-treated and sustained serious injuries.

After several hours of cruelty and degrading treatment, they started interrogating him until a phone call suspected to have directed operatives otherwise. These acts of torture are outlawed by the constitution and international instruments Uganda is a party and meant to scare away journalists from reporting on critical matters ahead of 2011 general election HRNJ-Uganda Programmes Coordinator G.W. Ssebaggala said.

Article 24 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda states that; No person shall be subjected to any form of torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and no one is supposed to subject any body to acts of torture.

Kasibante was transferred in his own vehicle this time and dumped at Mukono police station where he was charged with election violence under case reference number GEF/05/10 and recorded a statement. He was released on police bond.

In light of the foregoing it is our firmly held and treasured opinion that the acts of torture, inhuman, cruel and degrading treatment were and very much in contravention of our rights and freedoms as set out in Chapter four of the constitution and do state further that the said torture acts are demonstrably unjustifiable in a free and democratic society.

Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda therefore calls upon the Coordinator of intelligence services Gen. David Tinyefunza to investigate the para-military leader Kakooza Mutale and his subordinate operatives and be punished for torturing once found guilt.

That security agencies should respect the freedom of the press and other human rights as provided in the constitution and international instruments ratified by the government.

That parliament speed up the passing of the Torture bill whose overall objective is to punish and hold errant operatives, officers and perpetrators of torture liable for cases committed.

For More Information Contact;

Human Rights Network for Journalists – Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda)
Plot 16 Clement Hill Road – Nakasero
P.O.Box. 71314 Clock Tower Kampala – Uganda
Tel: +256-414-667627 / +256-701-810079
Or visit our website:

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