The Uganda Human Rights Commission has blasted security forces for the manner they handled the demonstration by Makerere University students over tuition increment.
Following the nasty protest against the 15 percent cumulative tuition policy approved by the university council last year, a combined security operation by both the police and the army launched an onslaught that saw a number of students arrested.
Addressing journalists on Wednesday, Dr.Patricia Achan Okiria, the acting UHRC chairperson said they are appalled by the manner security forces behaved during the demonstration.
“The commission is appalled by the use of unwarranted excessive force by the security personnel leading to violation of rights of students and journalists covering the incidents,”Achan said.
“The actions of the security personnel are regrettable and we strongly condemn them.”
As the demonstration escalated, security personnel were seen forcing themselves into the university halls where a number of students were either severely beaten or arrested or both.
Videos that leaked showed the military forcing the students to undergo some drills as they were being wiped, gestures that attracted wide condemnation.
The Uganda Human Rights Commission also joined the other forces in condemning security for breaking into students’ halls of residence.
“The mayhem created when security raided some halls of residence in the university during the night was to say the least appalling. We also take note of the students who sustained injuries and property lost during the violent arrests by security.”
He added, “Whereas security organs have the legal mandate to arrest suspects, they are required to do so within the provisions of the constitution.”
The US Embassy in Uganda recently blasted security for the manner they handled students who were demonstrating at Makerere University saying it was wanting.
The Police spokesperson, Fred Enanga on Monday said the students were being funded to carry out demonstrations, noting that the money was being channeled through a mobile money point at Wandegeya.
On Tuesday, President Museveni ordered the army to vacate the Ivory Tower and leave police to handle the situation.