By Serestino Tusingwire
The European Union has joined the Human Rights Watch and the US Embassy in Kampala among others to demand for a comprehensive independent investigation into the 2016 killings in Kasese District by the government security forces.
This comes on the heels of the shocking report by the Human Rights Watch which pinned UPDF for conducting unresponsive operations in the Rwenzururu Kingdom that resulted into death of scores of civilians including children.
The government has since denied the claim saying whatever the security forces did was correct and lawful.
However, in a lengthy statement released this afternoon, EU faults government of Uganda for failing to conduct/allow comprehensive investigation into the matter.
“Four months after the violence in Kasese district, which culminated in the incidents of 26-27 November 2016, the EU regrets that the Ugandan authorities have not yet launched a comprehensive independent investigation,” statement reads in part.
EU however stressed that it is ready to support any organization that is ready to carry out the investigation putting in consideration the witness and evidence protection.
“The EU notes the Government’s statement that Uganda has no lack of independent investigative capacity. We therefore call on the competent authorities to immediately conduct the necessary field investigation, ensuring strong witness protection and protection of evidence. We stand ready to support such efforts.”
EU therefore condemns the way government is handling the matter by trying the Omusinga wa Rwenzuru, Charles Wesly Mumbere, saying it would be much better if the conduct of security forces during the raid is also being scrutinized.
“We also note that the Government considers the ongoing Court case against the Omusinga to be the appropriate process for delivering justice. For justice to be impartial and complete, the conduct of the security forces during the raid on the Obusinga Bwa Rwenzururu palace should also be subject to scrutiny, with their full cooperation.”
EU warns that; “failure to fully investigate this tragedy will perpetuate insecurity, undermine the rule of law and deny the families their right to know the truth. As a strong partner to Uganda, we believe justice for victims on all sides is a prerequisite for peace and development.”
A few people who survived a terrible accident that claimed several lives including that of Toroma County legislator Cyrus Amadoi have finally spoken out, revealing shocking details about the tragedy.
The gruesome accident occurred when the taxis; one from Old Taxi park registration number UAW 200W which was heading to Mbale and another taxi UAL 278L, rammed into a trailer and Fuso truck respectively.
The survivors who are undergoing medical attention at Jinja Referral Hospital revealed that the accident didn’t happen as earlier reported by several people.
Wilson Ngobi, who was near the building at the scene which was knocked, said that “I was walking home when I heard a loud bang and quickly ran to hide. I saw the trailer ramming into a taxi and dragging it into the building.”
Another eyewitness identified as Jackson Mwesigwa said that “Our taxi was knocked head-on by a BIDCO trailer which was heavily loaded. The trailer swerved from its lane, lost control and rammed into our taxi which was heading to Mbale. I’m lucky I survived.”
Simon Peter Ochan, another survivor said that “Our driver wasn’t driving recklessly. He was actually a very cooperative and understanding man. When he saw the trailer knocking the taxi that was ahead of us, he tried to avoid ramming into both of them, but ended up knocking a Fuso truck that was parked by the roadside.”
Joshua Mulinda, the truck driver said that “I don’t remember what happened. I only recall people trying to pull me out of the vehicle.”
By Our Reporter
The biff between singers Edirisa Musuuza aka Eddy Kenzo and Moses Ssali aka Bebe Cool has escalated.
Kenzo has reportedly assured Bebe Cool to first complete his ‘Byafaayo’ house before attacking him again, because very soon he might not have a place to call home.
According to sources, Kenzo brags that Bebe Cool cannot be compared to him, because despite the many years he has been singing, the ‘self-proclaimed’ Big Size has failed to complete his house in Kiwatule, yet the landlord wants to sell off the house he currently occupies.
It should be noted that Bebe started constructing his Byafaayo house in 2008 and last year he allegedly got millions from the ‘Tubonga Nawe’ project which he was expected to use to complete the house.
However, he blew the money of buying a DMC Mercedes Benz which he often grounds due to mechanical faults, meaning that he registered a loss.
Actually, even this year might end without him entering the house. As a result of this, Kenzo was overheard boasting that “How can an old man who still rents want to compare himself to me, who is a landlord with my own houses?”
Although he used to brag about his Byafaayo house severally, Bebe Cool has since remained tightlipped about it these days.
By Our Reporter
The police in western Uganda are investigating allegations that one of their own shot himself dead yesterday evening after being denied Kandahar by his wife.
Constable Lawrence Kayanga,34, attached to Hoima Police allegedly shot himself dead inside the barracks after developing domestic wrangles with his yet to be identified wife.
Julius Hakiza, the Albertine regional police spokesperson said that “Kayanga shot himself at about 6pm on Wednesday evening at the time he was expected to report for duty.”
He added that “The deceased left behind a suicide note with the words: “I have decided to do it because I have no strength and peace.”
Hakiza says that by the time Kayanga shot himself dead, his wife was not in their house. The body was taken to Hoima Regional Referral hospital mortuary pending postmortem by police pathologists as investigations continue.
It is however suspected that Kayanga’s yet to be identified wife was cheating on him with another cop and he had learnt about her Sexcapades.
This is not the first time a cop is shooting himself dead over Kandahar. Godfrey Sabiiti, who was attached to Nsmbya barracks in Kampala, shot himself dead late last year after his wife denied him Kandahar because he had tested HIV+. He shot his wife dead before shooting himself.
The Coordinator of the Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU), Crispin Kaheru joined stakeholders from across Africa to launch the first ever, electoral integrity scorecard in Sandton Johannesburg, South Africa on March 15th 2017.
The high level meeting brought together over 40 members from election management bodies, civil society, intergovernmental and international bodies working on elections, as well as academicians.
The scorecard has been developed by the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA) and will be deployed to scientifically test the integrity of elections taking into account all the factors that influence elections throughout an election cycle. It has been developed as a useful tool to enable electoral stakeholders such as observers, governments, and citizens arrive at objective, logical rating about the integrity of an election.
This comes as a brand new innovation in the election observation field and it is definitely going to inspire objective assessment of our elections. It introduces another layer to support evidence-based and methodical reporting on electoral processes. In other words, this invention will weed out any form of subjectivity of election observers in commenting or reporting on electoral processes.
CCEDU in Uganda is going to be one of the first institutions to test the scorecard – especially in the upcoming by-elections.
Observer groups have in several countries been criticized for being biased and subjective in their reports and conclusions.
The meeting that took place at 20 West Capital Hotel was also attended by representatives from the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) including: the East African Community (EAC); Economic Community of Central African States (CEEAC); Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS); and Southern African Development Community (SADC).
On the sidelines of the meeting, Kaheru met with the Chairperson of the South African Electoral Commission, Glen Mashinini to discuss areas of potential collaboration.
By Our Reporter
A babe who recently graduated from Makerere University Business School (MUBS) was on Tuesday knocked dead by a speeding car along Entebbe Road.
Rachael Kokulakwe, who was also an employee of Bigtime Events company,
was knocked as she headed home. According to family members, Kukolakwe had graduated from MUBS with a bachelors degree in Leisure and Hospitality a few weeks ago. One of her friends identified as Moses Kodaba, a former coursemate, said that
“She was knocked down by a car in Namulanda, Entebbe as she crossed the road. She later succumbed to internal bleeding. Burial is scheduled for Thursday in Busembatya (Basoga region).” He added that “RIP my lovely sister, og and adorable friend! U will forever be dearly missed.”
By Our Reporter
A bloody war is raging on between Firebase Crew president singer Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and Ambassador Kintu Nyago, over a chunk of land in Busabala, near Lake Victoria shores.
Pepper Snoops have learnt that Nyago, who is the Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, accuses Bobi of allegedly grabbing his land at Busaabala landing site in Masajja Municipal Division, Makindye Ssaabgabo Municipality, Wakiso District.
Nyago alleges that Bobi Wine ‘is in bed’ with some officials of Buganda Land Board, who are helping him to secure a lease for his (Nyago’s) Kibanja as a customary tenant, in accordance with laws of Uganda.
According to sources,Nyago regularised his Kibanja holding with KK, a company that registered Bibanja holders on Kabaka’s Official Mailo land in 2006. It is now alleged that Bobi is using the absence of Nyago, who is on duty in New York, to grab his Kibanja.
However, Bobi has in the past been accused by other residents in Busabala of allegedly grabbing their land, although his siblings also accuse him of allegedly grabbing the father’s land
The lover of bootylious singer, Winnie Nwagi is deeply in love.
Joshua Rukundo aka Generale Czar’bu has released a new song “Engeri Yokukwana” where he vows to be the sole viewer of Nwagi’s solar eclipse until the earth sets them apart.
In the song, Rukundo declares unconditional love for the chubby babe who featured in the Video. He claims he will do anything to protect their love.
It’s a reggae jam and the audio was produced by Nessim Pan while the video was shot by Ivizuals and directed by Badi Films.
People out there are saying this song is a dedication to his new girlfriend, Winnie Nwagi.
South Africa based Sangoma, Cameroon Gitawo has in the recent past been in the news, mainly for snatching a married babe and NTV GXP presenter, Carol Flower.
He has finally come out to reveal the reason it couldn’t work out with the insanely gorgeous presenter.
Sources say that he was overheard telling friends that “I was crazy in love with Carol. I was ready to take on her kids as mine because I already have kids. I was ready to do anything for her and she is aware but she was not ready to be judged. She loved me but again she was scared of pursuing/ fighting for our love.”
He added “It was real for me but was heartbroken. I was disappointed when she chose not to fight for our love,” he said.
It should be noted that sex-oozing presenter split with her husband Cooper Ssali aka G-way two year ago and hooked Gitawo.
Gitawo even jetted into the country in August 2015 to accompany her to ‘Friends of Bebe Cool’ concert at Serena Hotel. Smitten Carol picked Gitawo from the Entebbe Airport when he landed at Entebbe.
The two were like Siamese twins during Abraynz fashion Awards at Serena Hotel the same year. If you met Carol and Gitawo then, you would think they were newlyweds. The way they would keep touching and whispering sweet nothings to each other made Ssali shed tears. This forced Pastor Robert Kayanja, to intervene and try to save their crumbling marriage of 8 years.
Songbird Irene Ntale is currently in USA for her upcoming show in Massachusetts that is scheduled for Saturday, 18th March at Club Rhinos in Waltham; MA.
Ntale caused massive erections and blistering temperatures in men’s southern department while at Miami Beach where she flaunted her well-toned body.
While enjoying a spot of sunbathing, Ntale seemed to be in good spirit as she flaunted her incredible figure on the outing.
She allowed her natural beauty to shine through; the beauty went make-up free for the outing, whilst she concealed her eyes with a pair of shades.
By Serestino Tusingwire
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is today, Thursday March 16, 2017 electing new leaders to take on the continent’s football governing body for the next five years.
CAF has only ever had five presidents in its 60-year history and the last time a new leader was appointed was way back in 1988.
Today’s election in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, could herald a change, but long-time incumbent, Cameroon’s Issa Hayatou, is not giving up without a fight.
Hayatou, in charge for nearly three decades, has often been re-elected unopposed. On the two occasions when he did face a challenge, he won with landslides amongst the electorate of presidents of Africa’s football associations.
In 2000, he beat Angola’s Armando Machado by 47-4 votes and four years later he defeated Ismail Bhamjee of Botswana by 46-6 votes.
As he seeks an eighth term on today, taking on Madagascar FA head Ahmad Ahmad, Hayatou knows that victory this time around will not come nearly as easily.
That aside, our own, Eng Moses Magogo (FUFA President) is also vying for CAF slot of representing CECAFA.
The death toll from Saturday’s landslide at a vast dump in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, has now risen to 113 people, local officials say.
A search operation at the Koshe landfill will continue overnight. As many as 150 people are believed to have been at the site during the landslide.
Meanwhile, the funerals of some of the victims have taken place.
The dump, which has served the city of four million for more than five decades, provided shelter for some.
The country is currently observing three days of mourning for those who died.
Hundreds of people attempt to make a living by scavenging at the landfill site, sifting through the rubbish for items they can sell. Some resided at the rubbish dump permanently.
More than 350 residents have now been moved from the site, the officials say.
The United States Embassy in Kampala has joined Human Rights Watch in calling for an independent and fair investigation into the 2016 killings in Kasese District by the armed forces.
In a sternly worded statement issued just after Human Rights Watch released its report on the massacre that shocked the country, the US embassy said: ‘We again urge the Uganda government to conduct or permit fair & independent investigation to uphold rule of law, give full & factual accounting of events.’
They added: ‘We remain deeply troubled by reported disproportionate use of force by Uganda security officials during November 2016 incidents in Kasese. We are particularly concerned by reports security forces made no effort to remove unarmed people from the site, leading to scores of deaths.’This comes on the heels of a damning report by Human Rights watch criticizing the conduct of the armed forces in their operation in Kasese and alluding to possible crimes against humanity. The government yesterday dismissed calls for an independent probe insisting the conduct of the armed forces was legal and justified. But government spokesman Ofwono Opondo in the government response acknowledged that the government had under reported the number of deaths arising from the operation. Opondo admitted that 103 people had been killed in the operation contrary to the government’s previous stated death toll of only 62 people. Opondo denied any children were killed in the operation.
But the New York based NGO reported: “Human Rights Watch found evidence, including accounts by confidential sources and medical personnel who witnessed the events, that security officials had misrepresented the number of people killed and eliminated evidence of the children’s deaths.”
Officials in Kenya’s Migori County had a nasty surprise when residents stopped and forced them to take rubbish from the area away in the back of their pick-up trucks.
The locals were protesting over poor collection services and seized their opportunity while the officials were on an inspection tour.
County environment official Elijah Odhiambo was forced to flee the irate residents in another vehicle, the Star newspaper reported.
It is reported that the sanitation in Migori county is wanting and the government have been reluctant to provide possible measures to make the area clean.
The Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has filed a civil suit in court in a big to get his salary arrears paid.
Lukwago has listed the Executive Director KCCA, Jeniffer Musisi, the Kampala minister Beti Kamya, KCCA and the Attorney General as respondents in the case filed on Tuesday by Lukwago and Co advocates.
In the suit Lukwago seeks among other things an order compelling the respondents to pay his salary arrears and other emoluments for the period of 30 months with costs.
Lukwago’s suit emerges from a failed attempt to impeach him as Lord mayor, in November 2013, the attempt was led by city councilors and the then Kampala Minister Frank Tumwebaze.
Lukwago asserts in an affidavit in support of the suit thus: “The applicant also seeks a declaration that the conduct of the respondents in continuing to freeze his salary and emoluments without any lawful justification is improper in law and ultra vires their powers.”
Lukwago wants an order of court, compelling Musisi the KCCA ED to pay his arrears without further delay.
The government had impounded a book published about last years disputed Presidential election in Uganda.
The 668 copies of the book titled ‘Controlling Consent’ was seized by customs officials and the reason given was that the owners of the book had made a false declaration on the importation papers.
“Your consignment of 668 books has been seized and is liable to forfeiture in accordance with the provisions of the East African Community Customs Management Act, on the following grounds: SECTION OFFENCE:-203 False Declaration,’ read a letter from Customs.
The letter is addressed to Centre For Basic Research giving them one month to redeem the consignment or the books will be forfeited and disposed off.
Dr Simba Ssali Kayunga, the CBR Executive Director, said Customs had not furnished them with details of the false declaration.
According the cover of the book posted on social media, its edited by Oloka Onyango, a Professor of Law at Makerere University and Josephine Ahikire an Associate Professor and Dean, School of Women and Gender Studies, Makerere University.
Dr. Busingye Kabumba took to twitter to describe the seizure of the books as scandalous. He tweeted: ‘Scandalous!! The book ‘Controlling Consent’ on Uganda’s 2016 election has been seized.’
On Wednesday, Human Rights Watch released a report in which it accused the UPDF of under reporting the death toll and covering up for many deaths, including those of children, during an attack on the palace of Omusinga Wa Rwenzururu, and other related operations in Kasese in November 2016.
Below is the full text of the government response to the Human Rights Watch report.
March 15, 2017: We have today, received a report of Human Rights Watch on the November 2016 Kasese incidences, titled “Uganda: Ensure Independent Investigation into Kasese killings”.
Our examination of the report however reveals several inconsistencies and flaws that do not represent the true facts of the subject matter. The report lacks depth, especially on the genesis of the near break down of law and order, which almost plunged the Rwenzori Sub Region into anarchy. It deliberately omits the incidents that led to the security forces responding, not only to defend themselves but also to maintain law and order.
The following need to be noted for those who may have missed out on the background of this situation:
- July 7, 2014; militia groups allied to Obusinga Bwa Rwenzururu in the Rwenzori region carried out coordinated attacks against security forces and civilians. Altogether, they carried out 13 attacks as follows:
At 3.00pm, they attacked Policemen at a weigh bridge at Hima, killed a Policeman, injured another and took away two (02) sub machine guns.
At Bigando, a UPDF soldier who was on pass leave was killed in cold blood and his family burnt in his house.
In Bigando, the militia also killed six (06) Basongora civilians.
At Karugutu Police post, these lawless people injured one Policeman and took away one (01) sub machine gun.
At Kikyo Police post, they took one sub machine gun.
At Kirumiya Police Post, they took one sub machine gun.
At Ntandi, they took 2 sub machine guns from the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) personnel.
At Kibuku, they ambushed UPDF soldiers who were taking reinforcements to Bundibugyo, killed one of them and took one SMG, but the attackers were neutralized.
In Bundibugyo, they attacked the Police Station, killed the Officer in Charge of Station and one policeman. They took his weapon.
They attacked Stanbic Bank but the attackers were neutralised.
These same militias attacked the Camp of 39 Battalion at Kanyamirima injuring one UPDF Captain and killed one soldier. They were however repulsed.
The attack on the Palace of Bamba King saw one gun being taken and one Policeman injured.
- On March 3, 2016, two soldiers who were on pass leave were kidnapped by Obusinga Bwa Rwenzururu militia near the Kasese palace as they passed by. The two were killed.
- On March 10, 2016, six soldiers on patrol were attacked, hacked with machetes by Obusinga bwa Rwenzururu militia and left seriously injured by the road side.
- On the evening of March 15, 2016, the GISO of Kyabarungira sub county and his brother were attacked and stabbed in Kasese town, by suspected OBR Youths leaving them seriously injured.
- On Mar 23, 2016, a gang of criminals associated to OBR cultural guards, armed with machetes, attacked Kidodo Police post in Kasese Municipality, leaving 01 police man killed and 01 gun taken.
- On the morning of March 23, 2016, clashes in Ntotoro sub county of Bundibugyo left 20 people killed, sparking a fresh wave of IDPs, approximately 5000 who sought refuge in Bubukwanga Camp.
- On November 5, 2016, one soldier on pass leave was killed in Karangura sub-county, Kabarole district by militias claiming loyalty to the Bakonjo King.
- On November 25, 2016, security forces recovered two submachine guns and disbanded a militia camp at Karangura subcounty in Kabarole district.
- On November 26, 2016, using their Prime Minister’s Office AS A BASE, the militias carried out simultaneous attacks on police posts like at Hima, Bwera, Maliba, Mubuku, Bwesumbu, Buhuhira and Bugoye, killing 16 Police officers and made off with weapons.
- On November 26, 2016, the security forces disbanded the attackers’ camp at Ihandiro and recovered submachine gun and magazines, fuel bombs, Obusinga Bwa Rwenzururu uniforms, machetes, among others.
- On November 27, 2016, security forces raided the Obusinga bwa Rwenzururu palace in Kasese, recovering a number of petrol bombs, machetes, and Obusinga Bwa Rwenzururu uniforms. Guns recovered from the palace were the same that had been earlier stolen from the police.
Directives were issued by government to the militias to disband in accordance with the laws, and in the interest of national security, but they regrettably decided to ignore all the calls, thus necessitating government intervention.
Today’s HRW report ignores the death and causalities the militias inflicted on members of security forces and civilians over the years. It further promotes violence in the region referring to machetes as “agricultural tools” as opposed to Uganda penal code act that defines them as lethal weapons. History reveals that machetes have been used in the great lakes region to cause genocide.
As opposed to the HRW report that sixteen children were killed during the operation, there is no evidence to back this falsehood. UPDF has a well documented record of protecting children, women and non combatants wherever it has operated.
Government of Uganda challenges the authors of the report to mention the families of missing persons and the alleged dead children. They should also provide evidence of deliberate and systematic targeting of children and women.
Our record establishes that a total of 103 deaths were registered. Out of these, 91 were male and 12 female, 16 of whom were police officers. A total of 51 bodies were unclaimed and were subsequently buried in a public cemetery in Kasese after toxicological and DNA samples were taken from each body and have been stored for any future reference. Therefore, anybody who claims a missing person can contact the police.
The report recommends independent investigations on a matter before the courts of law. This is untenable for now because it is at odds with the subjudice rule. However, Uganda does not lack independent investigative capability if there is need. And therefore, the call to suspend some commanders from their duties or restrain them from conducting government duties is uncalled for and unacceptable.
The main focus of government has been pursuing criminal investigation, bringing suspects to prosecution and restore order which is being achieved.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, UGANDA MEDIA CENTRE
Shock gripped mourners at a funeral in Zimbabwe over the weekend after prostitutes decided to turn their fallen colleague’s funeral in dance party.
The unexpected dramatic event occurred at Beerhall in Harare, Zimbabwe, when prostitutes came out from among other mourners and started wiggling their juicy bums in front of their late colleague’s coffin.
What had started as funeral quickly metamorphosed into a dance party of sorts, because while the prostitutes were twerking, other mounres joined them and started waving around blown condoms while massaging their bums and other body parts, while the crowd cheered.
The prostitutes claimed that their fallen colleague enjoyed twerking so much, reason why they decided to give her dance-filled funeral as a sendoff.
Ethiopia has declared three days of national mourning for victims of a landslide at a rubbish landfill site in the capital Addis Ababa.
Flags flew at half mast on Wednesday as the government announced that the death toll from the disaster that occurred at the 50-year-old Reppi dump on Saturday evening had risen to at least 72 people.
On Tuesday, at least 17 bodies were pulled out from the site and buried at the nearby Abune Aregawi Church, attended by hundreds of grief-stricken family members.
Emergency workers and police officers in Reppi told Reuters that the total number had risen to 82 by Tuesday evening.
Dagmawit Moges, spokeswoman of the capital’s administration, said search operations at the site were ongoing.
“Searches are taking place and the number could rise,” she said.
Hundreds of people live on the dump, the city’s only landfill site. Some of the victims had scavenged for food and items that could be sold, such as recyclable metal.
Gunmen from South Sudan have killed 28 people and kidnapped 43 others in neighbouring Ethiopia, an Ethiopian government official has said.
More than 1,000 from the Murle community carried out the attack on Sunday and Monday, in the Gog and Jor areas in the Gambella region, near the border with South Sudan.
Ethiopian troops were pursuing the attackers, Gambella region spokesman Chol Chany, said on Wednesday.
A similar incident in April 2016 saw 208 people killed and 125 children kidnapped.
Over the years Ethiopian and South Sudanese tribes have raided each other’s land, often to steal cattle and abduct children to be used as herders.
Gambella is currently hosting close to 300,000 refugees from South Sudan’s civil war.