A woman has dragged government to court to have her husband who was arrested for flogging an effigy produced dead or alive.
Ruta Ferdinand was last week arrested by police in the city centre with a stick and a loudspeaker as he canned an effigy dressed in a suit and a green hat saying he was punishing it for engaging in election malpractice.
In an application for habeas corpus filed through Kiiza and Mugisha Company Advocates, Gloria Ahabwe, the wife to Ruta says her husband was arrested on Monday, February,15, 2021 while peacefully demonstrating his opposition to President Museveni’s role in the “most militarized” and “violent” elections in modern Uganda by the police.
“The said policemen detained him at the Central Police Station before the military grabbed him and detained him incommunicado at the Makindye military police barracks. He is now suffering illegal incommunicado detention,” Ahabwe says.
The wife says that Makindye military police barracks where Ruta is detained has never been gazetted as a detention facility for civilians whereas all family members and other relatives have been blocked from accessing him.
“No charges have been brought against him in any competent court of law and no explanation has been afforded to his next of kin for the continued detention. The detention is therefore illegal, unlawful and unconstitutional and an infringement on his constitutional rights,” Ahabwe says.
She now wants court to issue an order to the commandant Makindye Military police barracks, Chef of the Defence Forces in the UPDF and the Attorney General who have been listed as respondents to produce Ferdinand Ruta dead or alive.
Last week, Norman Tumuhimbise, the national coordinator for Alternative Social Movement said Ruta is their member and was protesting against the outcome of the 2021 general elections.
Police had said that Ruta had been arrested on charges of becoming a public nuisance.