Police clash with mourners over resident’s death

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By FELIX AINEBYOONA & ALFRED TUMUSHABE

Mbarara. Police in Mbarara District were on Monday forced to use teargas to contain rowdy mourners in Nyakaguruka village, Rugando Sub-county, who were protesting the death of David Muganzi.
Muganzi is suspected to have been clobbered by police officers two weeks ago.
It is alleged that on January 7, Muganzi, 30, a charcoal dealer in Kisenyi Kakoba Division was attacked by five security operatives including policemen attached to Mandela Police Post at around 10 pm while he returned from a party.
The security officers allegedly beat Muganzi into coma after he failed to give them Shs20,000 they had demanded. He was admitted to Mbarara Regional Refferal Hospital and his relatives demanded that the concerned police officers be held accountable.
When Muganzi died, the district police commander, Mr Jaffar Magyezi, took the body to his home on Sunday.
However, the relatives and residents protested by blocking Mbarara- Kabale road with stones demanding a postmortem report. Police fired bullets and tear gas to contain the situation.
Mr Magezi promised to deliver the postmortem on Monday. The residents, however, rejected the document he delivered at around midday saying it is a photocopy and insisted on availing them the original.
The angry mourners tried to chase away police but they reiterated by firing teargas forcing the locals to flee the home.
At around 2 pm, the Mbarara Resident District Commissioner, (RDC) Capt Martha Asiimwe, arrived with the original document.
The residents, who had ran to the nearby hills and plantations returned to listen to the District Internal Security Officer, Mr Robert Nabimanya and other security officials.
Mr Magyezi said police was forced to use teargas at because the mourners had become rowdy.
However, capt Asiimwe apologised to the family of the deceased and mourners, condemning the act of police using teargas on them.
“We ask you to forgive us for teargassing you when you have lost your son. It is not human for people to lose their relative and you mistreat them, it is bad and I kindly request you to forgive us,’’ Capt Asiimwe requested.
She did not read the report to the mourners but handed it to the family members.
“The killers of the boy are known and they must be reprimanded and taken to court. We would have wanted to kill them as well but laws of our land bar us from such,” Capt Asiimwe said.
Before the burial, the family of the deceased had agreed with the officials to meet the IGP and discuss how the family would survive since police are responsible for the death of their son, who was the only bread earner.

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