BY UGANDA VANGUARD
NSAMBYA – The Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) is troubled by the death of Rita Nabukenya and another man that was shot dead by a Local Defence Unit officer who was travelling on a Police Patrol
UP 2570. On Monday, February 24th 2020, Ugandans received the sad news of the passing of a young soul under unclear circumstances due to politics and on Tuesday 25th 2020 Ugandans received more news of a shooting of a People Power supporter by an Local Defense Unit.
“CCEDU within the fraternity of Human Rights is going to document all violations against political actors and engage parliament, the Police; and in collaboration with lawyers also evoke the human rights enforcement Act to bring the implicated policemen to book,” said CCEDU Acting Coordinator Ms Charity Kalebbo Ahimbisibwe Wednesday 26th, 2020.
She further explained, “CCEDU appreciates the fact that political parties are organizing to participate in the 2021 elections, however, as much as political party actors should be seen to embrace the democratic values of tolerance and peace, the Police should also desist from promoting violence and intimidation among the electorate. Tolerance of diverse views, should be harnessed as an indicator of political maturity.”
Ahimbisibwe added, “Therefore, CCEDU demands that the Police meets the People Power leadership over the matter of shooting its supporters and seek peace above accusations and counter-accusations. CCEDU demands that the Police expedites investigation of these matters and shares findings with the public. The Police should be cognizant of the rights of the electorate, voters, political actors and supporters in a multi-party dispensation.”
Rita Nabukenya a young tuck in the people power pressure group, died in an accident as described by the Police. Nabukenya and another allegedly people power supporter that was shot dead in Nansana, are not isolated cases involving the Police. During the Makerere strike of 2019, a young lady by the name of Mollie Siperia was mishandled by the Police. This worrying trend involving the police, young girls and People Power supporters calls for the raising of eyebrows. CCEDU condemns some sections of security agencies for promoting violence rather than tolerance in an electoral season.
Article 29 of the Uganda Constitution, clearly states that; Every person has a right to — (a) Freedom of assembly and to demonstrate together with others peacefully and unarmed and to petition. In Chapter 4 of the Constitution , the fundamental rights and freedoms of an individual are inherent and not granted by the state. It was, therefore, Nabukenya’s Constitutional Right to enjoy what she believed in. Nabukenya would not have lost her life had the Police not blocked the consultations of People Power at Pope Paul. And the other alleged People Power supporter who was returning from the burial of Nabukenya would have in-turn not died. After all the People Power consultations were okayed by the Electoral Commission, the supreme body that is mandated to manage electoral processes in Uganda.
Furthermore, Article 211 (3) of the Constitution states that: the Uganda police shall be nationalistic, patriotic, professional, disciplined, competent and productive. And its members shall be citizens of Uganda of good character.
Also Article 212 the function of the police is to protect life, property, preserve law and order and to prevent and detect crime as well as cooperate with citizen authority. The same article states that the Police, at all times will act with reasonable force. On a scale of 10 judging by the given yardstick in the constitution the Police scored a miserly 2, in the circumstances surrounding the deaths of People Power supporters.
According to a police statement Nabukenya was a resident of Bunamwaya and sustained serious injuries after falling off a boda boda.
The Police also maintained that, Nabukenya fell after the motorcycle on which she was travelling, collided with another boda boda, when the rider was overtaking a police patrol vehicle, Reg. No. UP 4841.
According to the Police the boda boda on which Nabukenya was travelling was registration number UEY 675P. People Power disputes the Police account and asserts that the Police vehicle knocked Nabukenya knowingly.
Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) is a broad coalition that brings together over 800 like-minded civil society organizations and over eight thousand individuals to advocate for electoral democracy in Uganda.
The overriding agenda of this coalition is to advocate and promote integrity, transparency and active citizen participation in Uganda’s electoral process.