Basalirwa supporters accuse police of harassment

Supporters of Asuman Basalirwa the Justice Forum candidate in the Bugiri by-elections have accused supporters of NRM and FDC candidates of assault and intimidation with aid from police.

Ssentongo Abdulnoor, the spokesperson for Basalirwa’s campaign team said that since the campaign begun early this month they have experienced continuous assault on their supporters by known supporters of FDC and NRM.

“We have repeatedly reported the matter to police but nothing has been done. Just yesterday three members of our camp were attacked and beaten seriously” Ssentongo said.

He said the DPC of Bugiri Ssebuyungo Jeff has been all over the media demonising their camp yet all the assault incidents have been happening under the watch of the police.

According to Ssentongo, one of their supporters, Bosco was stubbed in the stomach but when reported the matter, police said this was a case of simple robbery.

He said they have already written to Inspector General of Police Martin Okoth Ochola complaining about the manner in which his police officers are conducting themselves but they are yet to receive any responses. “The [police] have turned into NRM cadres by engaging in campaigns. They attend night meetings of the NRM candidate where they plan to assault our people.” Ssentongo said.

Police yesterday denied reporters’ access to the assaulted Basalirwa supporters undergoing treatment at Bugiri main hospital.

“We ask the Electoral Commission to get in charge of the election because we can’t allow such acts to continue. We also call upon the IGP to take action against these errant police officers.”