Journalist Shot By Military in Uganda Is In Need And Under Threats
Kampala / Mbale, UGANDA/ HRNJ-Network/– February 21, 2011. A journalist shot by the military on February 19, 2011, while covering election fracas in Eastern Uganda is receiving arrest threats on his Hospital bed from the security. Odeke’s brother Onyango told Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) that they have received information that security is threatening to arrest Odeke so as to confiscate photographic evidence.
Julius Odeke a freelance photographer for both Red Pepper daily publication and Razor publication limited is currently admitted at Mbale Referral hospital nursing bullet wounds after being shot in the ribs by the military personnel yesterday while covering election fracas in Budadiri west, Mbale district in Eastern Uganda. “I received a tip of soldiers beating up opposition supporters in Budadiri west on the voting day and decided to rush to the scene. On my arrival I took photographs of the military personnel pouncing on opposition Member of Parliament Nandala Mafabi and his entourage” Odeke told HRNJ-Uganda on his hospital bed.
Odeke said his professional work angered security operatives who started demanding for his camera which he resisted but they started beating him up and later sought refuge in Mafabi’s vehicle. The soldiers then struggled to break the locked door of the vehicle in order to seize Odeke’s camera but in vain. Soldiers resorted to opening fire direct to the occupants of the vehicle from the back and one of the bullets crushed Odeke’s ribs.
The soldiers travelling in several vehicles including those of Government and said to be under the command of the minister in charge of the presidency Beatrice Wabudeya who is also contesting for Budadiri west parliamentary seat. Unfortunately Odeke’s health condition is worrying with his unstitched bullet wound bleeding endlessly since he has not received adequate medical treatment from his Mbale Hospital bed.
By the time of this alert, police in Mbale was recording a statement from Odeke from the hospital about the security threats. Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) challenges police to investigate security personnel involved in the shooting of the journalist and the alleged threats.
Odeke has been evacuated to unknown hospital as a precaution measure to save his life
For More Information Contact;
Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda)
Kivebulaya Road – Mengo Kampala Opp. St. Marcelino Pre. School
P.O.BOX. 71314 Clock Tower Kampala
Tel: +256-414-272934 / +256-414-667627