NBS’ Sserwanja records statement, released on bond

The three BBC Africa  journalists, Kassim Mohammed, Godfrey Badebye, Rashid Kaweesa together with their driver Shafiq and Vivian Nakaliika Sserwanja, wife to NBS TV journalist Solomon Sserwanja have been bonded by the police two days after their arrest.

The journalists were arrested on Wednesday on accusations of buying classified government drugs. They are required to report back at Central Police Station in Kampala on February 18.

The journalists outside CPS Kampala after their release

Moments later, Sserwanja arrived at the police in company of NBS news manager Joyce Bagala to record a statement.

Police spokesman Fred Enanga told journalists that Sserwanja has also been released on police bond.

“These were previously arrested as suspects but they turned to be journalists,” Enanga said.

He said, arrest was based on intelligence information about a group that was involved in purchase of classified government drugs.

He said that although the police recognises the important role that journalists play in the fight against corruption, it is better for investigative journalists to work with the police.

“We highly commend the media for the role they play in fighting corruption, it is clear that their (journalists) motive was to expose how easy it is to buy government drugs,” Enanga said.

Police spokesman Fred Enanga during the press conference at CPS Kampala

The journalists had been to hospitals in Arua, Kiruddu and Gulu.

Based the statements that police have recorded from the suspects, police has set up a team to widen the scope of investigations.

The implicated health officials, Enanga said, will charged for abuse of office.

Solomon Serwanja in an interview with fellow press men.

Enanga added that the Police are working with office of the DPP for guidance on whether the actions by the journalists breached any rule.