This statement was originally published on hrnjuganda.org on September 13, 2017.
Police officers of Kigungu Post Police on September 13th, 2017 assaulted and confiscated gadgets of journalists who had gone to Kigungu Landing Site to cover the sensitization campaign of Democratic Party dubbed “Kogikwatako” against the amendment of the Age Limit clause.
Two journalists, Ssebalamu Kigongo of Bukedde television was manhandled and Sande Ssebagala of NBS Television was assaulted, his shirt torn and his camera was confiscated. The journalists implicated Wambete Cuthbert, the Officer in Charge of Kigungu Police Post, Mugenyi Ambrose, the Community Liaison Officer and other police officers of being responsible for the assaults and confiscation of gadgets.
“I was stopped from recording the views of the people about the said campaign by the Officer in Charge of Kigungu Police Post Wambete Cuthbert insisting that I had to first seek permission from the police and a scuffle ensued as he and other officers tried to confiscate my camera.” Ssebalamu Kigongo told HRNJ-Uganda.
Sande Ssebagala on his part told HRNJ-Uganda that he was recording the scuffle between Ssebalamu Kigongo and the police officers when he was suddenly attacked by the OC Kigungu police post Wambete and he confiscated his Sony camera and tripod stand. “I was then manhandled, roughed up and had my shirt torn by Mugenyi Ambrose.” he further narrated to HRNJ-Uganda. This information was corroborated by Muganga Evie of Radio One and Diana Kibuuka of CBS Radio who gave accounts of how the two journalists were assaulted.
However speaking to HRNJ-Uganda, the OC Kigungu Police Post Wambete Cuthbert acknowledged that had been a scuffle but he denied assaulting and confiscating the journalists’ gadgets and pledged to help the journalists recover their gadgets.
“As an Organization, we are going to pursue the individual police officers implicated in these acts and make sure that justice is served to the affected journalists.” Said the HRNJ-Uganda National Coordinator, Robert Ssempala