DP Leaders Clash With Prison Official Over Activists

2194 Views Masaka, Uganda

In short
Kabaami ordered the DP leaders and journalists to leave accusing them of criminal trespass.

Prison authorities in Masaka have finally succumbed to pressure from DP leaders and allowed them to visit the remanded Uganda Young Democrats activists. The activists are Yasin Ssemwogere, Moses Bigirwa, and John Baptist Ntuuwa, Ismael Layima and David Sserunjogi. They were arrested last week and arraigned in court for staging an illegal assembly to celebrate the 75th birthday of President Yoweri Museveni on December. The activists were remanded to Masaka central prison by Hood Matovu, the Masaka Grade one margistrate. On Monday morning, over 20 DP leaders from Masaka district led by Florence Namayanja, the Bukoto East MP stormed Masaka central prisons to visit five UYD activists but they were turned away by Juliet Kabaami, the Deputy Officer in charge of Masaka Central Prison.
Kabaami ordered the DP leaders and journalists to leave accusing them of criminal trespass. She said that the officials wouldn’t be allowed into the facility because they had not sought permission from the commissioner general of Uganda Prisons. This sparked off angry reactions from the DP leaders leading to a bitter exchange with the Prison official. Namayanja tried to force her way into the gates until the prison officers willingly yielded to her pressure to grant her access to the inmates. She was accompanied by Dick Lukyamuzi Ssenyonga and Katugga Musota, both DP officials from Masaka district. Shortly after leaving the facility, Namayanja said the activists were in good health.

// Cue in: “They are psychologically…
Cue out: …to be used.”//

Denis Lukanga, the Masaka District DP Spokesperson faulted the prison authorities for blocking him from visiting the suspects, in breach of their rights. Juliet Kabaami, the Deputy Officer in Charge of Masaka Central Prison declined to speak about the controversial visit.


About the author

Edward Bindhe
Bindhe prides himself on being a part of the society he writes about. He believes there is no way a journalist can understand his society unless it considers him a part of it. This is why he is dedicated to investigating the challenges of the "little person."

Bindhe says, "My work reflects the Uganda Radio Network unique approach to news." Not many Ugandan journalists would consider or even notice the re-emergence of Water Hyacinth on a lake. Bindhe does.

Truant children will attract Bindhe's attention until he gets to the bottom of their truancy: poverty and the need to work to earn bread for their families. These are the kinds of stories Bindhe is often after.

Edward Bindhe is the Masaka URN bureau chief. Rakai, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalangala, Mpigi, Kalungu, Bukomansimbi and Sembabule districts fall under his docket. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.

A Mass Communication graduate from Uganda Christian University, Bindhe started practising journalism in 2008 as a reporter for Radio Buddu in Masaka district.