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Five Police Officers Suspended for Assaulting Trader in Soroti

Five police officers have been suspended from duty in Soroti for allegedly assaulting a trader at Nakatunya Ward in Soroti City.

The officers were captured in a video beating a trader identified as Moses Ongodia in his Supermarket located in Nakatunya Ward, Along Lira Road. The incident happened on Sunday evening when the officers, enforcing curfew reportedly found Ongodia’s door still open past the required time.

In a video that was shared on social media, a woman and children (family members) are seen carrying a few items from the cage inside the supermarket with the access door to the cage closed. Shortly after a few moments, the policemen are seen breaking into the cage and briefly engage in verbal communication before assaulting Ongodia, who is seen at the corner of the cage.

When contacted, Ongodia said that he had closed the outer door where customers use to access the supermarket but the inside doors were still open as he was summarizing with the day’s work. He says that the police patrol car stormed his premises on assumption that he was still transacting business.

He adds that his pleas to the officers for mercy didn’t yield anything as the officers started assaulting him.

Now, the East Kyoga Regional Police Spokesman, Oscar Gregg Ageca says that the Police Standard Unit has started investigations into the matter adding that the officers could face police disciplinary court after the investigations. He however said that the five officers have been suspended.

Ageca says that the preliminary findings indicate that the incident happened at exactly 8:57pm, almost an hour into the curfew hours. He, however, notes that the officers, whom he declined to mention conducted themselves in an unprofessional manner that may warrant disciplinary measures against them.

Whereas some people in the region claim that the police have been brutalizing them while enforcing the presidential directives, Ageca says that Ongodia is the first person to formally record a statement against the police unprofessional conduct.

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