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Bobi saga: Tortured women narrate ordeal

Among the 33 other Ugandans accused of treason together with Bobi Wine and three other MPs are three women.

Their names are at the bottom of the charge sheet. For most of the last two weeks their fate was not known since they were last seen being helped to limp into court.

Now out on bail, they narrated their ordeals to lawyers:

One of the tortured suspects being helped prison and police officers unto a waiting vehicle earlier. Photo: courtesy 

1. Night Asara, 38, district councilor for Arua Hill Division, and mother of three told of her violent arrest. A senior police officer kicked, stomped and used the gun butt of an assault rifle to repeatedly hit her multiple times in the torso.

Night was with a group that was bundled onto police vehicles, driven at break-neck speed to Gulu. In Gulu, she and other female detainees report that they were threatened with rape and death by police officers including a commander.

Night who had C-Section during delivery of one of her children has a delicate scar. She was in severe pain especially in the pelvic area and torso. For days she was passing blood in her urine as result of torture.

2. Caroline Nalubowa, 28, a resident of Arua. At 7pm Nalubowa had gone to buy a drink at Hotel Royal. She had just left the bar counter with her drink when a hail of bullets thundered outside.

Shortly after a soldier grabbed Nalubowa, threw her drink away and assaulted her viciously. She was dragged outside and told to lie down with the rest.

Soldiers stomped on her back and kicked her repeatedly. She was later transferred to Gulu Police Station.

3: Akira Maida, 23, works as a cashier. She’s a mother of a one year and three months old baby. She was a bystander who had left the baby at the hotel with someone. When the chaos ensued, Akira started running towards the hotel to get her baby but she didn’t make it. A group of armed men caught and roughed her up severely.

Consequently, she was injured in her abdomen and now passes blood whenever she urinates. The minder Akira had left with her baby also run for her life, leaving the baby behind. Akira was later told that her baby was picked up by a ‘good Samaritan’.

4. Jane Abola, 31, was a guest at Hotel Pacific when the Special Forces Command soldiers and police raided. She is a resident of Kampala. She was not part of the electoral campaign in Arua or any related activities. Abola is a mother of three.

Abola was woken up by loud gunfire. It wasn’t long before loud bangs on her door and demands that she opens the room door which she did immediately. Armed men in military uniform descended on her, slapping and kicking her.

Abola told lawyers that the men asked her to reveal the whereabouts of Bobi Wine. When Abola said she didn’t know, this further infuriated them. Led by a man she identified as the Regional Police Commander, they hit her multiple times with a gun butt and kicked her repeatedly all over the body.

Abola was taken to Arua Police Station, thrown into a packed room. At 2.00am she was bundled onto a vehicle driven to Gulu Police Station. Her children are aged 9 years, 5 years and three months whom she had left in Kampala.

Throughout these sad narrations, the name of Regional Police Commander Jonathan Musinguzi and Gulu District Police Commander Emmanuel Mafundo come up as having been central to the torture of those arrested.

Interviewed for a comment yesterday, Army spokesperson Richard Karemire said the army has launched an inquiry to ascertain what exactly happened in Arua and hold the errant security operatives to account.


+4 #1 WADADA rogers 2018-08-29 11:17
And they say UPDF is a professional army, how can you torture a fellow Ugandan as if you are beating a log
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+4 #2 Kelly 2018-08-29 12:26
Indiscriminate arrests, torture, inflicting pain, injuries and fabricated charges!!!

I have said before that for M7 to fall it may not need to fight him but rather cause him to make mistakes.

For how can you explain the vandalism and misuse of fire arms against civilians who you had all the prerogatives to summon and report to police?

Towards the last days, God made Pharaoh's heart hardened the more and he could not let the Israelites go. And we know eventually how they left Egypt!!!

But where are the women activists, especially those in the ruling party? This is not just violence against the opposition and Ugandans but women and children.
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+2 #3 Empayippayi 2018-08-29 16:00
Uganda's present rulers love to call themselves enlightened because they hold University degrees .

It's inconceivable that they can behave like beasts in a manner which would even embarrass Idi Amin whose Government was composed of semi-illiterate people.

Nepotism in Government departments and more so in the security forces has bred impunity and barbarism.
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+1 #4 rubangakene 2018-08-29 22:38
These so called police commanders should face the same charge in international court as the Myanmar generals responsible for the torture and rape of the Myanmar people.

It is a high time that Uganda should be treated as one hell of a crime scene.
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+3 #5 Jama 2018-08-30 01:11
What inquiry can the army launch when the one who gave orders is proud of the atrocities committed by his militia?

Where are women activists? Where are women legislatures? Where are female lawyers?What an odious act of barbarism!
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+2 #6 eric L 2018-08-30 23:21
We say "elyoka nga netonya" All along we lied to ourselves that UPDF is proffessional just because they were not at work and when the work comes which is any armies job,a simple scuffle then they were exposed.

So you fake army, war unto you.
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