Following last week’s country wide demonstrations which led to the death of more than 40 Ugandans, the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC) has condemned the “excessive force” used by security agencies as well as the acts of violence which were exhibited by rioters.
Addressing the press at the Commission headquarters in Kampala, the Acting Chairperson Dr. Katabalirwe Amooti said that senseless acts of inflicting injuries on individuals and loss of lives of many people together with destruction of property in several areas of the country are unacceptable.
“The Commission condemns in the strongest terms possible the perpetrators of the violence that was experienced, irrespective of which side they belong; whether they were errant law operatives or the violent rioters, or even the hooligans and thugs that took advantage of the chaos to terrorize and violate the rights of the people of Uganda,” Katabalirwe said.
Katabalirwe stated that currently, the Commission is going on with investigations about human rights violation incidents surrounding the demonstrations which led to loss of people’s lives.
He pointed out that although the Commission’s Directorate of Complaints, Investigation and Legal Services (D/CILS) throughout all the ten regional offices and twelve field offices located in different regions have been open, no single case has been reported in relation to the most recent election violence.
“I would like to remind the general public that under Article 52 (1) of the Constitution, the Commission is mandated to receive and investigate complaints on human rights violations, and to offer redress accordingly,” he said.
Katabalirwe called upon all Ugandans not to shy away as their rights are being violated when the Commission is in place to address their grievances.
On the excessive force used by security Agencies, the Acting Chairperson promised that investigations on all individuals in question are underway and after which, they will be subjected to the due process of the law.
“Members of the public must desist from acts of violence, hate speech, political intolerance with ethnic, religious and other forms of undertones, as well as behavior and acts of lawlessness such as rioting, hooliganism, thuggery, indecency and other criminality,” he warned.
These were advised in case of any grievance to use the established legal mechanisms to resolve any disputes or disagreements that arise, and seek to obtain legal redress where applicable.