Masaka Journalists Assaulted by Bobi Wine’s Bodyguards Demand Justice and Action from Police

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Journalists from the Greater Masaka region who were brutally assaulted by youthful members of the National Unity Platform (NUP) who act as bodyguards to party president Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, are demanding to see action taken against their offenders by police and the Human Rights Network for Journalists (HRNJ).

This follows recent run-ins with Kyagulanyi’s bodyguards that occurred while journalists were covering a burial ceremony in Manja Village, Lwengo, where Kyagulanyi and other dignitaries were in attendance.

According to a statement by Masaka journalists under their umbrella body, Greater Masaka Journalists Association (GREMAJA), released on May 19, 2024, a group of NUP bodyguards, led by one Achileo, assaulted journalists Gertrude Mutyaba of NTV, Magret Kayondo of Radio Simba, and Zainab Namusaazi of NBS TV, destroying some of their equipment while they were on duty.

GREMAJA, which strongly condemns the assault on their journalists, notes that the act of brutality is not only an attack on the media but also a deliberate attempt to infringe upon freedom of expression, adding that such oppression undermines the fundamental rights of journalists to report freely without fear of violence.

The aggrieved journalists are demanding that the concerned parties uphold media freedom and protect journalists from violence and oppression.

“We call upon the police to conduct a thorough investigation into this matter and urge media rights defenders, such as the Human Rights Network for Journalists (HRNJ) and other human rights organizations, to take an interest in this case,” the statement reads in parts.

NUP is yet to release a statement in response to the misconduct of its members and has not made any effort to put their security guards in check.

The complaints of Masaka journalists add to the voices of many people, especially road users who have been harassed by NUP’s youth, who always block the way to create clear passage for their party president by brutalizing other road users and snatching valuables from onlookers.

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