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Women’s Day Protest: Arrests Follow Call for Timely Police Brutality Compensation


Women's Day Protest: Arrests Follow Call for Timely Police Brutality Compensation
PHOTO — NTV Uganda

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Three women found themselves in police custody after staging a protest outside the Naguru Police Headquarters in Kampala on March 8, 2024. The demonstration was in response to the prolonged delay in receiving compensation from the police for instances of brutality. Among those arrested were Nana Namata Mwafirika, Phiona Arinatwe, and Night Asara, who are currently being held at Jinja Road Police Station.

According to Mr. Luke Owoyesigyire, the deputy spokesperson for Kampala Metropolitan Police, the arrests were made on charges of inciting violence. The protest, intended to be peaceful, was disrupted by law enforcement officers as it unfolded near the police headquarters. Owoyesigyire stated that the demonstration was considered unlawful, particularly as it occurred in proximity to a security installation where sensitive security matters are handled.

The police claim that prior notification of the protest was given by the suspects, as evidenced by a letter dated Thursday. However, the situation escalated when the suspects began urging members of the public to join them, prompting concerns of a potential mass gathering. Law enforcement intervened swiftly to prevent any escalation of the situation, citing the need to safeguard security equipment stored within the facility.

Before their arrest, Nana Namata informed journalists that in 2019, she had been awarded compensation of Shs43 million by the high court following a lawsuit against the police for brutality. Despite the court’s ruling, Namata and her fellow protesters allege that they have yet to receive the compensation owed to them.

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The incident highlights ongoing tensions surrounding police brutality and the perceived lack of accountability within law enforcement agencies. The arrested women’s actions reflect a broader societal demand for justice and accountability in cases of police misconduct.

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