Police has admitted that the alleged actions by a police driver in an NTV video footage released on Saturday “are concerning and highly regrettable by management.”
In the video, a police vehicle knocks a man as he waves to former FDC presidential candidate Rtd.Col Kizza Besigye as he drove through the city early in the week. Another man, following the police car and also believed to be a security officer, steps on the same victim seconds later.
A statement released by Police on Sunday said their Professional Standards Unit (PSU) is reviewing the footage and working to identify the victim, the police pick-up, its driver and car commander.
Police said the officers, when identified, will be suspended from operational duties, pending outcome of the investigations. The Uganda Police will use the NTV video to justify evidence of professional misconduct by selected officers undergoing disciplinary court processes.
@Snduhukire @ntvuganda Yes we have. Do you have a closer angle? We are trying to get the vehicle registration so we can track the driver.
— Uganda Police Force (@PoliceUg) July 30, 2016
The Police have instituted inquiries in response to a video footage that emerged of a police pick-up, appearing to have knocked and brushed a man to the roadside. The alleged victim, who is still unidentified, was maliciously charged and kicked at by another unidentified man with a helmet and in civilian attire, whom many claim to be part of security. The video by a civilian journalist was kept quiet until when it was released yesterday by the media, from a previous public order incident, with traces of alleged police brutality, for which disciplinary court hearings were taking place.
We do admit that the alleged actions by the police driver in the video footage are concerning and highly regrettable by management. As a result, the Professional Standards Unit (PSU), upon reviewing the footage, is working hard to identify the victim, the police pick-up, its driver and car commander, which officers will have to be suspended from operational duties, pending outcome of the investigations. It will in addition, use the video to justify evidence of professional misconduct by selected officers undergoing disciplinary court processes.
Although, many questions about our policing and accountability have been asked in the last one month, we highly encourage the filming and release of videos on sensitive police related incidents, as a very important step in promoting transparency in the course of our duties; provided it does not interfere with a police officer on duty, and or refusal to obey a lawful order, obstruct an arrest or police action among others. This is consistent with our commitment to increased transparency through various rectification campaigns, which is essential in rebuilding and strengthening our trust with the public’s we police.
We are meanwhile engaging and re-engaging our officers on the minimum use of force, through better communication especially intense and fast moving public order policing situations. For this we are confident of our ability to continue protecting the safety and security of all Ugandans and visitors, whom we request not to judge the entire police force by the actions of a few bad officers.
CP Fred Enanga
Press and Public Relations Officer