Presidential candidate Gen. Henry Tumukunde has strongly condemned the alleged attack on a section of journalists who are on campaign trails of National Unity Platform’s flag bearer Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu and other opposition candidates.
On Sunday, Kyagulanyi, together with his supporters were in a stand-off with security forces while campaigning in Lwengo where one of his journalists, Ashraf Kasirye was hit on the head by a tear gas canister, according to police spokesperson Fred Enanga.
Other journalists including Ali Mivule from NTV and Daniel Lutaaya of NBS also sustained injuries.
Mivule told his fellow journalists that the Masaka Regional Police Commander, Enock Abaine referred to him as collateral damage before shooting at him.
On their way to Kampala, Kyagulanyi’s security detail, Frank Senteza was allegedly ran over by a security vehicle and killed, a statement, which was later rubbished by the UPDF spokesperson.
“UPDF would like to clarify that the late Senteza Frank, the NUP candidate close protection person, was not knocked by Military Police Vehicle as purported, but rather fell off a speeding car No. UBF 850Z (Drone) he tried to jump to but fell off,” Brigadier Flavia Byekwaso, the UPDF spokesperson tweeted.
In a press statement that was released on Sunday, Tumukunde called for an immediate end “to these atrocities” if the polls are to be peaceful and fair to e.
“I would like to convey my most sincere condolences to the family of Mr. Senteza. I would also like to send my condolences to my brother Mr. Robert Kyagulanyi on the tragic loss of his member of staff. I also wish Mr. Kasirye a quick recovery,” he said.
“We condemn the continued harassment and manhandling of journalists during the campaigns. They are beaten and they have sustained numerous injuries while doing their job. This harassment is a tactic to intimidate them to stop them from reporting what is going on in these campaigns,” Tumukunde added.
He called upon all members of the opposition to endeavor to operationalize the recently signed ‘Declaration of Principles’.
“We must unite to stop this aggression from the security forces on members of the opposition who are carrying out their constitutional right to solicit for votes for the coming election,” he noted.