7 soldiers sentenced for assaulting journalists
The Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) under its Military Police Unit has sentenced seven of its officers to different punishments ranging from caution to three months imprisonment for assaulting journalists who were covering Bobi Wine’s petition to the UN human rights office.
Deo Akiiki, the UPDF deputy spokesperson says that the suspects have been sentenced to different punishments in a court chaired by Lt Col Gai Mpandwa, the UDC Chairman.
Amongst those sentenced is Capt. Jessy Odwenyi who will serve 90 days in detention for commanding juniors to engage in human rights abuses.
L/cpl Kassim Zirimenya was charged with 60 days, while Cpl Nimusiima Justine was sentenced to severe reprimand and caution.
Pte Kisakye Victoria and Pte Isaac Opiyo were also sentenced to 62 and 60 days in the military prison respectively.
Akiiki noted that the culprits and the entire military police has been cautioned to maintain discipline and professionalism while on any deployment.
“The above officer and militants will act as a deterrent measure to officers and militants while executing their constitutional mandate,” he said.
This came shortly hours after the Chief of Defence Forces Gen. David Muhoozi apologized to the public and the journalists of the errant behaviour not his men. He promised to take action but also meet the medical bills of those injured in the attacks.
Muhoozi also promised to have a symposium to brainstorm with media on how to work together as well as promising to include in the military training media related subjects to align the army with the media.