Prosecution witness denies being obstructed by journalist

MULINKampala, 23rd January 2015; Hearing of a case in which Mulindwa Mukasa, of Associated Press is accused of obstructing Wandegeya District Police Commander continued today at the Magistrate’s Court, at the Law Development Centre in Kampala.

Testifying before Grade One Magistrate Jolly Nkore, Detective Sergeant Mugisa Abas, the second prosecution witness, told court that on the 26 of November 2013, while he was at the police counter at Wandegeya police station, he saw a group of people including Mulindwa Mukasa trying to block a police officer who was taking their colleague Kasule Richard from Wandegeya police station to Central police station.

He said they attempted to pull Kasule and blocked Tinkasiimire from taking him away, and that they were taking photographs and shouting at the top of their voices. He further testified that they were not successful and it was at this juncture when the DPC Julius Caeser came from outside the police station and asked him who these people are. He ordered for the arrest of the ringleader as others walked away. He said the group included a woman. Asked by the Magistrate how he knew that Mulindwa was the ring leader, Mugisa said “he pulled Kasule and when he failed he started taking pictures.”

When asked by the defence lawyer, Catherine Anite, whether the DPC, Julius Tusingwiire was obstructed, Mugisa said, “the obstruction was only against Tinkasiimire. However he added “the accused obstructed the DPC when he disobeyed his orders” but he did not inform court which orders the DPC gave to the accused. When asked if the “group failed to obstruct Tinkasiimire” Mugisa answered yes.”

Mulindwa is accused by the State of obstructing Julius Caeser Tusingwire, the DPC of Wandegeya Police Station from carrying out his lawful duties. The case was adjourned to 25th February 2015 for further testimony from 3 State witnesses.

The prosecution should produce all the remaining witnesses so that the case is expeditiously disposed of,” said the HRNJ-Uganda National coordinator Robert Ssempala.

Human Rights Network For Journalists – Uganda

Plot 18, Block 12 Stensera Road

Kayanja Triangle Zone

P.o.Box 71314 Clock Towwer K’la

Toll Free Helpline:0800144155

Telephone: +256 414 667 627, +256-414-272934

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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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