Police in Amolatar district are holding one of their own and two UPDF soldiers accused of torturing a suspect to near-death while in custody.
The police officer has only been identified as Osigire, the officer in charge of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) at Namasale police station.
The identities of the soldiers who are attached to Namasale army barracks haven’t been disclosed.
The trio is said to have tortured 34-year- old Hassan Kavire Alira, a resident of Anoga village in Acii sub-county Amolatar district following his arrest for theft of household property.
It is alleged that shortly after his arrest, Osigire picked the suspect from the cells, tied him on a tree and started torturing him together with the two soldiers.
The suspect’s condition deteriorated because of the torture prompting his wife to demand his immediate release through the Community Liaison Officer to enable him access treatment. Alira was then released and transferred to Amolatar HCIV, where he is currently receiving treatment.
He told URN on his sickbed at Amolatar HCIV that the officers whom he described as ruthless, subjected him to burning flames under the command of Osigire.
With tears rolling down her cheeks, his wife Jennet Akite explained that the OC CID has oftentimes blocked her from seeing her husband.
Jacob Chepsikor, the Amolatar District Police Commander confirmed the incident saying security is doing all that is required to ensure the law takes its course. He says they have entered a case of torture against the suspects at Amolatar CPS vide SD Ref. 38/02/03/2021.
North Kyoga Region police spokesperson James Ekaju says the suspect reportedly resisted arrest which led to a scuffle between him and the officers. He said that much as the security officers have been charged with torture, the police are yet to do thorough investigations into the matter.
Between 2012 and 2016, the Uganda Human Rights Commission received over 1,000 complaints of police-orchestrated torture. Uganda is party to the United Nations Torture Convention and one of only 10 African countries with anti-torture legislation. Sadly, there is a wide gap between the aspirations of the documents and implementing the obligations to end torture in Uganda.