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GOVT: We don’t know who arrested New Vision journalist Etukuri

Minister of State for Internal Affairs Mario Obiga Kania briefs parliament on Thursday. PHOTO VIA @Parliament_Ug

Kampala, Uganda | UGANDA PARLIAMENT | The Minister of State for Internal Affairs Mario Obiga Kania has denied knowledge about the arrest of Charles Etukuri, a journalist working with the New Vision, and that his whereabouts are yet to be established.

Etukuri, a security correspondent with the newspaper, was arrested from his work place by operatives eyewitnesses claim were donning military fatigues similar to that of the Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF).

Obiga said government learnt about the missing scribe through the media.

“By Tuesday, the police had not known [his whereabouts] but it is their duty to trace Etukuri and if he is being kept by a department of government, he should be produced in court,” said Obiga.

The Minister’s response followed concerns raised by several legislators at the sitting of the House chaired by the Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah, on Thursday, 15th February 2018.

His Defence and Veterans Affairs counterpart Adolf Mwesige asked for more time to investigate claims that UPDF officers participated in the arrest.

“I have just learnt about it from here that the people who are alleged to have abducted the person were in military uniform. Even criminals are capable of putting on clothes similar to military uniform,” said Mwesige.

Etukuri’s arrest and the death of two investors, which occurred last week in two leading city hotels were raised by MP Theodore Ssekikubo (NRM, Lwemiyaga), who pinned security agencies, specifically the Internal Security Organization (ISO) over the deaths and arrest.

“Neither the police nor the army are able to tell us where Charles Etukuri is. The challenge is the manner in which the security personnel were involved in arresting and then escorting these investors [to their hotels] is suspicious,” said Ssekikubo.

The investors, who media reports claim were in the country to meet security chiefs from ISO, died in the city hotels.

In a communication to the media over the weekend, ISO Director General Col. Kaka Bagyenda denied any links with the dead investors but said the domestic intelligence agency has commenced investigations into the incident.

Ssekikubo blamed the arrests on an alleged bickering among key players in the security services, particularly Security Minister Lt. Gen. Henry Tumukunde and Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kayihura.


SOURCE: Uganda Parliament

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