I’ll punish military for brutality, says Museveni

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Soldiers brutally beating civilians in Kampala

President Museveni has promised to punish his soldiers for brutally arresting, beating and torturing Ugandans during “Free Bobi Wine” demonstrations in and outside Kampala.

Museveni condemned in the strongest terms the shooting by the Police of one of “Bazukulu, Sekisivu”, who was in a taxi, together with others, going to participate in football matches somewhere else [Kayunga district].

He said the Policemen involved will be punished. Fortunately, they were identified.

It was either panicky actions on their part or even malice, aimed at spoiling the name of the NRM, he said.

“These people were not part of the rioters in Mityana. Why shoot them? This is very much regretted.”

Victoria University

Museveni, however, condemned the Mityana rioters who were the original cause of this confusion and who looted the kiosks of the low income earners.

“I will visit them and support them. That riot was organized by people associated with the indisciplined MP, Hon. Zaake. The facts will come out.”

He condemned in the strongest terms, the killing of somebody, in the Katwe area, whose name he has not yet been told by elements of the Security forces.

“When I asked the Police, I was told of a stray bullet being responsible for the death. A stray bullet (a bullet that goes away from the target) originally aimed at what and why?”

Museveni said in such a situation the issue of stray- bullets does not arrive. A stray- bullet is fired horizontally at a target but misses and hits another person.

“When you fire up in order to scare, you cannot talk of a stray bullet. By the time the bullet falls back on the ground it will be like a stone. I doubt that it can kill.”

He went on: “Unless I get new facts, I provisionally, condemn that act and demand investigations into the circumstances by the Police and other Agencies. The dead person should be identified so that we can assist the family.”

The president also condemned the beating of journalists by elements of the Security forces.

“It is true that the journalists working for foreign interests or for our own local parasites tell lies, they do not do balanced reporting. On account of that you can block them because sometimes they interfere with the scene of crime.”

He went on: “If they refuse, you arrest them and charge them with disobeying lawful command. Beating, however, is wrong because the Security forces do not have that power. People should not be beaten even as a punishment.”

He said they can be imprisoned, fined, hanged, etc according to the law and logic but they cannot, be beaten (flogged) except if the Police is dispersing a menacing mob threatening to kill people or damage property.

“In some countries, they use batons. Finally, the anti-riot SOPs(Standard Operational Procedures) give the whole spectrum of options: warning rioters using loud- speakers, using shields and batons, using tear gas, using rubber bullets, using water – cannons, using rifles but firing in the air and, finally, shooting directly at the rioter in self- defence( for the Security personnel), to stop him harming a mwanainchi or damaging property if they do not pay heed.”

He concluded: “Therefore, Bazukulu, do not be misled by those who are misusing you that the Security cannot use deadly force. It all depends on the circumstances.”

 

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