Washington, US | THE INDEPENDENT | The U.S government has sanctioned former Uganda Police chief Gen.Kale Kayihura for his role in what it described as serious human rights abuses and corruption. He was sanctioned under the Global Magnitsky Act.
The State Departments said in a statement that they are publicly designating Kayihura, the former Inspector General of the Uganda Police Force and its commanding officer from 2005-2018, under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2019.
Kayihura was fired as Police chief by President Yoweri Museveni last year and has since faced several charges in the military court. He is out on bail.
“We are targeting Uganda’s former Police Inspector General Kale Kayihura for using corruption and bribery to strengthen his political position, as units under his command committed serious human rights abuses,” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. “The U.S. government is committed to leveraging our human rights and corruption authorities to target, disrupt, and counter those who engage in abuse and corruption around the world.”
“As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of Kayihura, and of any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by him alone or with other designated persons, that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of designated or otherwise blocked persons,” the state department statement added.
Today I publicly designated former Inspector General of the #Uganda Police Force Kale Kayihura for his involvement in gross violations of #HumanRights. We will continue to promote accountability for those who violate human rights. https://t.co/smvIbzFtAY
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) September 13, 2019
Section 7031(c) provides that, in cases where the Secretary of State has credible information that foreign officials have been involved in significant corruption or a gross violation of human rights, those individuals and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.
- As the IGP for the UPF, Kayihura led individuals from the UPF’s Flying Squad Unit, which has engaged in the inhumane treatment of detainees at the Nalufenya Special Investigations Center (NSIC). Flying Squad Unit members reportedly used sticks and rifle butts to abuse NSIC detainees, and officers at NSIC are accused of having beaten one of the detainees with blunt instruments to the point that he lost consciousness. Detainees also reported that after being subjected to the abuse they were offered significant sums of money if they confessed to their involvement in a crime.
- In addition, Kayihura has engaged in numerous acts of corruption, including using bribery to strengthen his political position within the Government of Uganda, stealing funds intended for official Ugandan government business, and using another government employee to smuggle illicit goods, including drugs, gold, and wildlife, out of Uganda.
The Global Magnitsky Act (click to read)
STATEMENT IN FULL
MICHAEL R. POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE
Public Designation, Due to Gross Violations of Human Rights, of Kale Kayihura of Uganda
The Department is publicly designating Kale Kayihura, the former Inspector General of the Uganda Police Force and its commanding officer from 2005-2018, under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2019 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, due to his involvement in gross violations of human rights. Specifically, the Department has credible information that Kayihura was involved in torture and/or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, through command responsibility of the Flying Squad, a specialized unit of the Uganda Police Force that reported directly to Kayihura. The Treasury Department is concurrently designating Kayihura pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13818, which builds upon and implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.
Section 7031(c) provides that, in cases where the Secretary of State has credible information that foreign officials have been involved in significant corruption or a gross violation of human rights, those individuals and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States. The law also requires the Secretary of State to publicly or privately designate such officials and their immediate family members. In addition to the public designation of Kale Kayihura, the Department is also publicly designating his spouse, Angela Umurisa Gabuka, his daughter, Tesi Uwibambe, and his son, Kale Rudahigwa.
In Executive Order 13818, the President declared a national emergency with respect to serious human rights abuses and corruption globally, which constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States. Through this E.O., the President has authorized the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of State to impose economic sanctions and visa restrictions, respectively, on persons determined, among other things, to be responsible for or complicit in, or to have directly or indirectly engaged in, serious human rights abuse or corruption.
These actions against Kale Kayihura underscore our concern with human rights violations and abuses in Uganda, as well as our support for accountability for those who engage in such violations and abuses. We call on the Ugandan government to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly.
— The Independent (@UGIndependent) February 10, 2019