“People cannot open up to you and give you information if they fear you. You need to reach out to them and explain what you do, and why you do it that way,” said a commissioner with the Uganda Human Rights Commission, Maguru Agaba.
He made the remarks at the opening of a three-day civic engagement workshop for Rapid Response Unit (RRU) operatives at Crane Paradise Hotel in Mukono recently. Maguru said that if RRU builds a better relationship with the public, the organ will not need to apply excessive force when arresting and extracting information from suspects.
This, he said, would reduce on incidents of human rights violation. The workshop, under the theme Promoting Human Rights, Peace and Tolerance in the Democratisation Processes, was organised to enhance the officers’ conscience and observance of human rights while executing their duties.
Agaba challenged the RRU operatives to remain impartial and professional while carrying out their duties.
He also urged them to read the Constitution and internalise it such that it guides them whenever in line of duty, especially when handling suspects.
About 51 officers attended the workshop. They complained that the mandatory 48 hours within which they are required to produce suspects in court are insufficient to conclude investigations.