RUBIRIZI. Chief Justice Bart Katureebe has warned security agencies against taking injured suspects to courts. Mr Katureebe, who was yesterday launching the construction of Justice, Law and Order Sector (JILOS) building in Rubirizi District, said Article 44 of the 1995 Ugandan Constitution prohibits torture.
“Security forces when you are arresting Ugandans, arrest them like humans but not animals. We do not want to bring people in court while bleeding, failing to walk, sick, because those people (the sick) belong to the hospital not court,” Justice Katureebe said.
Mr Katureebe said the torture meted out on members of the Opposion during the by-election campaigns in Arua on August 13 is not acceptable under the law.
Police and Special Forces Command soldiers that guard the President allegedly tortured and arrested 33 people, including MPs Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, Kassiano Wadri, Francis Zaake, Gerald Karuhanga, and Paul Mwiru.
They were charged with treason at Gulu Magistrate Court on August 16 and remanded until August 27 when they were released on bail by Gulu High Court. Mr Kyagulanyi was charged with same offence on August 23 after the Court Martial dropped charges of illegal possession of fire arms.
Mr Katureebe said he has been reading reports of alleged torture in newspapers and nobody has officially informed him.
Justice Katureebe said he wrote to the minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs on August 17 to have allegations investigated, action be taken against those who tortured, and those detained to be produced in court.
“They must stop it. And I think under the Act which prevents torture, if you are found to have tortured a person you can be personally punished. I think people must understand that what you do to somebody today can also be done to you,” he said.
Building. The JILOS building will house the chief magistrate’s court, office of the Resident State Attorney and the district police station. The construction will cost Shs1.8 billion.