Five Ugandan journalists survive mob justice

HRNJ-Uganda, Alert

Masaka, 30th/July/2013

Five Ugandan journalists survive mob justice

Five journalists, on July 29, survived a mob when a woman who claimed was possessed by special spirits turned against them and ordered her followers to mob them up as they covered a story of reported cult worship at a landing site. Four of them ran away while another was hit with a charcoal stove.

Uganda Radio Network’ journalist, Eddie Bindhe was hit with a charcoal stove by the said cult head, Julian Nakachwa. He fled when she went to draw a panga from the house. Those who ran included; Jacinta Bwanika of Bukedde TV, Issa Aliga of NTV, Dismus Buregyeya of Vision Group and Ali Mambule of WBS TV.

“When one of us, Dismus took a photo from the house where these people had converged, she charged at us and ordered her followers to attack us but they did not heed. My colleagues ran away as she approached us. I stood still so, she hit me with a charcoal stove, I disarmed her of a brick she wanted to further hit me with, and so she rushed to the house to bring a panga. It is then that I ran away. A feel pain the leg where she hit me. The police had been informed but they never came to give us protection.” Bindhe told HRNJ-Uganda.

“We were allowed in by one of her aides, but when I took a photo, ii was surprised when she charged at us. I ran away, but saw her attacking Bindhe.” Buregyeya told HRNJ-Uganda. This information was confirmed by Mambule, Aliga and Bwanika who all ran away.

The police did not intervene in the matter and no investigations were carried on. The Regional Police Commander for the area, Maxwell Ogwal said, “I got in touch with the DPC (Henry Kavuma) but he told me that nothing happened and therefore no need to investigate,” He told HRNJ-Uganda.

The local claim that Nakachwa stopped fishing at Kaziru landing site, she claimed that primary school pupils should not go to school in a local school because in was constructed in the way of the said spirits, and that she also stopped women from accessing this landing site among others.

“Such actions must be discouraged because they pose a threat to the lives of the journalists. The police should investigate this matter and bring the perpetrator to book for her actions against the journalists. We commend the community for sparing the journalists.” Said HRNJ-Uganda’ National Coordinator, Geoffrey Wokulira Ssebaggala



For More Information Contact;
Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda)

Plot 18, Block 12 Stensera Road Kayanja Triangle Zone
P.O.BOX. 71314 Clock Tower Kampala. Tel: +256-414-272934 / +256-414-667627
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About Human Rights Network For Journalists-Uganda

HRNJ-Uganda was established in 2005 by a group of human rights-minded journalists who developed a sense of activism amidst a deteriorating context due to glaring abuses targeting the media. The network gained formal registration as an independent non-profit and non-partisan media organisation in 2006. The identity of HRNJ-Uganda lies with its diverse membership across the board including the print and electronic media, freelance investigative journalists and individuals from other professions.
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