A TV journalist pins a former Old Kampala Division Police Commander charged with assault.
By Betty Amamukirori & Farooq kasule
A television journalist has pinned former Old Kampala Division Police boss facing charges of assault and causing bodily harm to a local journalist Andrew Lwanga, using video clips.
Ronald Galiwango, 29, a local TV journalist presented a video clip showing how Joram Mwesigye, a former police officer attached to the Professional Standards Unit, assaulted and occasioned bodily harm to Lwanga during a protest by the unemployed youths.
In the video that was played in court under the directives of Grade I magistrate Sanyu Mukasa, Mwesigye, during the protests, picked a sizeable thick dried stick from another police officer, charged directly at Lwanga, who was by then filming the events, and hit him twice on the head.
Lwanga fell down, tried standing up but failed. When the nearby officers saw him writhing in pain, they dragged him to a white Toyota Mark II car that was on standby and put him on the co-driver’s seat. Mwesigye took the driving seat and drove off to Old Kampala police.
Galiwango, while testifying in court, said on that fateful day, the unemployed youths under their umbrella organization- National Association of the Unemployed Youths, were matching to the IGP’s office to present their grievances.
When they reached Namirembe road at Bakuli, they were intercepted by a plain clothed man and Mwesigye wielding a cable wire.
“He started beating the youths and chasing after those running, in the process he fell down. He then stood up, walked back to the car and drove off.”
After a few minutes, the officer came back with three other officers. When the youths saw him, they run away. As fate would have it, Lwanga stayed and continued filming.
“Mwesigye picked a stick from an officer and went directly to Lwanga and hit him twice on the head” Galiwango narrated to court.
He said the officers never allowed them to help Lwanga even when he was crying for water; instead they drove him to police and dumped him outside the police cells.
Galiwango said Lwanga was later helped by an officer he only identified as Lweza, who saw him in pain, and took him to Nsambya hospital for treatment.
On January 14, 2015, Mwesigye was charged with assault and causing bodily harm to a local journalist Andrew Lwanga.
He was also charged with two counts of damaging property, including two cameras; one belonging to Lwanga and the other to Bukedde Television scribe Joseph Ssetimba.
Prosecution alleged that the suspect on January 12, 2015 at Frelon Guest House Namirembe road assaulted Lwanga occasioning body harm and also damaged his video camera.
It further alleged that the suspect on the same day damaged a Panasonic Video Camera of Ssentimba.
Lwanga attached to WBS Television and Ssentimba were allegedly battered with an electric cable by Mwesigye while covering a demonstration staged by unemployed youth.
Meanwhile Mukasa has adjourned the case to April 2 for further hearing.
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