The Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) has, through the court martial, dismissed four of its personnel found guilty of aggravated torture against a suspected motorcycle thief.
According to Colonel Deo Akiiki, the Deputy Spokesperson of the UPDF, the personnel were found guilty of aggravated torture of Nelson Omon, a civilian, contrary to Sections 2(1a, 2a, 5k) of the 2012 Torture Act No. 3.
“Four of our personnel found guilty of aggravated torture against a suspected motorcycle thief have been dismissed with disgrace with a one-year imprisonment at the Ugandan government prison, Lira Main,” said Col. Akiiki.
Col. Akiiki noted that the court martial hearing was held on December 15, 2023, at Lagat primary school, Lagat village in Pajong parish, Muchwini subcounty, Kitugum district.
Col. Ismael Ssendagira, who presided over the court martial, sentenced Cpl Odong Richard Burton, Pte Mongu Acel Sunday, Pte Ogwang Denish, and Pte Omara Martin Henry to dismissal with disgrace from the Defence Forces and imprisonment for one year at Uganda government prison Lira.
“The convicts have a right to appeal the sentence within 14 days in the general court martial in Kampala,” said Col. Ssendagira.
He added that A-4 Private Morris Omara has been acquitted of the allegations after he was found innocent.
The Resident District Commissioner (RDC) of Kitgum District, Ebil Jimmy Sseggawa, commended the Court for doing its work diligently and publicly showing justice to the Ugandans.
“Don’t fear that we’re taking away Lagot detachment; instead, we’re tightening security for the good of our country,” the RDC stated.
He urged the locals to collaborate with security agencies and advised them to desist from acts of injustice.
Col. Akiiki urged the citizens to utilise the security to engage in productive economic activities, especially agriculture.
“You should use the peace and develop yourselves and our country, in general, to engage in government development programmes like the parish development model and Operation Wealth Creation, among others,” Col. Akiiki said.
The court was attended by the 5th Division Deputy Commander, Col. Gai Mpandwa, 505 Brigade Commander, Col. Patrick Opera, Kitgum District Internal Security Officer Simon, Kitgum District Local Leaders, Religious Leaders, and the local community.