Press confront Uganda police and why Museveni still needs ICC

Uganda police take journalist for treatment after beating him up.
Two Uganda police Superintendents escort Lwanga to hospital after one of their own beat him up.

By Jessica A Badebye

As Uganda was still pondering on what to do with the Lord Resistance Army deputy commander Dominic Ongwen who surrendered himself to US official in the Central African Republic last week, the rest of the world has witnessed unity and togetherness exhibited by Ugandan journalists this week when they all agreed to blackout coverage of Uganda Police Force activities until the Inspector General Of Police (IGP) General Kale Kayihura meets them. The blackout follows last week’s grave assault of journalists by the Division Police Commander Joram Mwesigye, who intercepted journalists who were covering a peaceful demonstration by unemployed youth to the IGP’s office.

The heinous Mwesigye who without warning arrived at the scene in his personal car, had an electricity cable and started lashing at all journalists covering the protest, causing many to run for their dear lives. “I am going to shoot you if you don’t stop filming what is going on now,” he threatened. Unfortunately two journalists, Andrew Lwanga and Joseph Settimba went away with injuries. Lwanga, a cameraman and reporter with Wavah Broadcasting Services was hit on the head. He lost balance and immediately fell on the ground and due to the acute pain caused by the electric cable lash, wailed relentlessly while Settimba, whose acute chest pain and headache presented two days later went away with half of his trousers torn. As I write this Letter from Kampala the two journalists are still admitted in Nsambya hospital and Rift Valley Medical Centre respectively, while Mwesigye is out on a court bond worth over UGX (Uganda shillings) 800,000 [approx.. £183].

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