Police deny violating Betty Nambooze’s rights

By Shamim Nateebwa.

snateebwa@ug.nationmedia.com

Police have dismissed media reports pinning it for allegedly blocking Mukono municipality MP Betty Nambooze from traveling abroad for further treatment.

Speaking at the Human rights commission dialogue on Tuesday, The police head of human Rights AIGP Erasmus Twaruhukwa said they have not yet received any communication from the legislator or even her lawyers regarding her intention to travel abroad for further treatment.

“We have never gotten any submission showing that Nambooze needs to be taken abroad for treatment but we actually hear rumors and as police we do not work on hearsay,” said Mr. Twaruhukwa.

He meanwhile justified why police has had Ms. Nambooze and other suspects at large in detention for more than 48 hours.

“Sometimes we keep suspects beyond 48 hours because of the prolonged investigations and we release them on bond if we fail to substantially conclude our investigations,” added Mr. Twaruhukwa.

Speaking from the same dialogue, the Human rights lawyer Ladislous Rwakafuuzi urged police to seek permission from lawyers before keeping suspects in custody for over 48 hours adding that the constitution should in same regarded not be amended to remove this rule.

On Friday Last week police arrested Betty Nambooze from her home and has since been detained at Nagagalama police and after was taken to Kiruddu hospital after her condition deteriorated.

Her lawyers led by the Kampala lord mayor Erias Lukwago yesterday petitioned the Uganda Human Rights commission seeking powers to invoke article 53(2) of the constitution to order for her immediate release so that she can travel for further medical review.

The Commission’s chairperson Mr.Meddy Kaggwa said they are going to investigate Ms Namboze’s case before they can come with any further action.

“we are going to look into the into the document written by Nambooze’s lawyers seeking for her release to go for further treatment and we shall after come up with our side,” noted Mr. Kaggwa.

The dialogue that attracted different stakeholders among them Police, army and civil society organizations was aimed at enhancing the state of accountability and ending all kinds of impunity and human rights violations.

Mr Kaggwa said the commission intends to have talks with all organizations to see that they take accountability in preserving human rights while doing their work adding that police will be their point of emphasis since it has new leadership.

“The police force has now new leadership and we shall put our focus there to see how they can perform better to end violation of human rights,” added Mr. Kaggwa.