EU wants Independent Investigation into deaths during Bobi Wine protests

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The European Union (EU) delegation wants an independent investigation conducted into acts of political violence that erupted in the country resulting into deaths of more than 40 people last week in Uganda.

In a joint statement released on Thursday, the EU delegation together with diplomatic missions of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Iceland and Norway expressed urgency in the launch of full investigation into last weeks events to ensure justice for victims.

The EU says the chaos as well as disproportionate use of force by security services require a full and independent investigation to ensure justice for victims as well as avoid impunity for the perpetrators who must be held accountable for their actions.

Last week, Uganda witnessed chaotic scenes as the military and police battled rioters who were protesting the arrest of the opposition National Unity Platform (NUP) presidential candidate Robert Ssentamu Kyagulanyi.

Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine was arrested on 18th November 2020 while on a campaign trail in Luuka District for violating Ministry of Health guidelines in the prevention of spread of COVID-19. His arrest triggered two-day violent protests in several parts of the country to which security responded with teargas and bullets leading to deaths, serious injuries and loss of property.

“The Uganda government and its institutions have the responsibility to ensure the safety, security and dignified treatment of all citizens including electoral candidates and their supporters in line with national laws and Uganda’s international Human Rights commitments…A full investigation should be launched into the events of 18th and 19th of November to ensure justice for victims and to avoid impunity for the perpetrators who must be held accountable for their actions” The statement reads.

The statement however urges all political actors to ensure full implementation of the COVID-19 Standard Operation Procedures and the relevant regulations designed to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The statement further urges all political parties and the electoral candidates to call upon their supporters to refrain from violence and inflammatory language, and take firm action to end any provocation or incitement to violence or any unlawful action.

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