By Spy Uganda
Adjumani: Nation Media Group journalist, Iceta Scovin who works for NTV and Daily Monitor publication in particular was yesterday allegedly battered by the Adjumani district police bosses while pursuing his duties of covering the enforcement of curfew guidelines.
Iceta, who is the NMG’s Northern Uganda correspondent revealed it all started when he was heading to sleep from work and rammed into a deadly enforcement by the police that he, as a professional journalist felt, should cover, not knowing that the officers had run out of mercy for any journalists who uncover their ‘ugly night gigs.’
”It was around 7:13 pm after taking my supper from one of the restaurants in the town and on my way back to the hotel room. The vendors and the general public started running after seeing police officers chasing people from the streets, a pregnant woman was also running while holding her boiled maize on her head parked in Kavera during the curfew time. Imagine what a nice picture for the history of Uganda in Madi land being such a vulnerable person rushing in the pandemic situation, I said I could not miss it,” narrated Iceta.
He says it was during the course that the ‘barbaric’ police officers came from his back and started hitting him with guns until they kicked him into their enforcement van to Adjumani CPS where he had to spend a night filled with unimaginable pain as a result of body injuries he attained during the brutal arrest.
As if that was not enough, Iceta says in the morning the District Police Commander released him without any charge and when he tried to record a statement, he was neglected by the police officer he identified as Afande Ondongo who told him he would do that only after receiving orders from above [probably his superiors].
Iceta who is going through much pain mostly from the back, says he lost UGX 70,000, tripod stand of the camera, charger of the phone during the process.
”What crime have I committed to the extend of subjecting me to such torture if they are doing right things at right time for the right purpose. Honestly, we can not be subjected to such harassment and torture because Journalism is not a crime,” angry Iceta noted.
This is not the first time security operatives mostly police and army have assaulted journalists noting that among other incidents military and police officers beat and seriously injured journalists earlier this year as they covered Nation unity platform opposition party leader Kyagulanyi Robert Ssentamu delivering a petition about human rights violations to a United Nations offices in Kampala.
At least 20 journalists were hurt in the attack, with at least four sustaining deep cuts on the head, according to Uganda Journalists Union.