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ASHRAF KASIRYE: Online Journalists’ Body INDOJA-U Condemns Security Attacks On Media

RE: TARGETING OF JOURNALISTS COVERING OPPOSITION PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES BY UGANDA SECURITY PERSONNEL

Independent Online Journalists Association-Uganda (indoja-U) has noted, yet again, with great concern the TARGETED ATTACKS, high handedness and wanton brutality meted on journalists covering the opposition candidates, notably NUP presidential candidate also Kyadondo East MP Ssentamu Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and FDC’s Patrick Oboi Amuriat.

Very worrying also, is the fact that some of the perpetuators of these heinous acts are plain clothed and hooded. Those in uniforms have also started plucking off their name tags and ranks during these illegal operations, mainly to evade being identified for accountability, because, they must at some point. The security personnel are now INTENTIONALLY targeting journalists who are covering these wanton injustices meted not only on the media but the general public.

Journalists Ashraf Kasirye (Radio One correspondent and Ghetto TV camera man), Ali Mivule and Daniel Lutaaya of NTV and NBS TV respectively were Sunday 27/12/2020, seriously injured by the security personnel. Ali Mivule, in his own narration says a whole RPC pointed a gun at him, cocked it and shot at him in the thigh at close range as he said to him; “collateral damage”!  To take you back, Ghetto TV is one of Bobi Wine’s affiliate online channels that UCC recently asked Google and Youtube to pull down.

This also takes us back to the ugly scenes of Luuka District recently where the same Ashraf Kasirye, Sam Balikowa of Ghetto TV, among other journalists were violently teargased and later brutally arrested, reportedly for covering the ugly scenes of the protests, where they also destroyed journalists’ equipments in order to destroy footage, where more than 50 unarmed civilians lost lives.

Ashraf Kasirye

indoja-U, an association that brings together online media in Uganda takes this as a serious attack on the freedoms of expression, not only to the media, but the general public atlarge. Security is here by reminded that journalists shoulder a pivotal role and social contract with the public, to collect, filter and feed them with information to enable them make informed choices, because we all know, that an informed society is an empowered society.

On this note, we grief with all the families of those who have since lost their loved ones during this electoral violence, including the late Francis Senteza Kalibala, Bobi Wine’s private security team, who is said to have been overrun by a military police patrol truck No.H4DF2382 today Sunday 27/12/2020 at Busega, a Kampala suburb.

We appeal to all security agencies in Uganda to restrain themselves from acts that violet the Rights and Freedoms of not only the press, but of all Ugandans.

Andrew Irumba Katusabe

President

Independent Online Journalists Association-Uganda (indoja-U)  (0782-342317 / 0757-342317)

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