The UPDF has warned that its officers have a right to self defence in case they are under threat of attacks from members of the public or any other person.
Addressing journalists on Monday, the UPDF spokesperson, Brig Flavia Byekwaso commented on the incident in which John Akugonza, a boda boda rider was shot dead by a UPDF soldier enforcing President Museveni’s inter-district travel ban announced as one of the measures to contain surging cases of Covid-19.
“The deceased, John Akugonza 28 tried to force his way into a roadblock and knocked a private. When the private walked up, he fired to disable the boda boda rider from running away and wounded him but unfortunately, he was announced dead on arrival at hospital where he was being taken,” Byekwaso said.
He said the UPDF soldier is currently receiving treatment at Muhoti barracks as investigations into the incident continue.
The army spokesperson said in two separate incidents in Wakiso, night patrol operations to enforce curfew were pelted with stones by members of the public whereas in another incident, a man identified as Musoke tried to disarm one of their officers but was overpowered.
Brig Byekwaso however warned the public against this vice.
“I sound a strong warning to perpetrators of such acts that they will be dealt with because soldiers under such threats will have no option but to defend themselves,” the army spokesperson said.
“Where soldiers are conducting their patrols and doing their work, there are guidelines to be followed but some things go out of their way and out of anger they are forced to shoot”
She also asked members of the public to follow the Standard Operating Procedures put in place by government to control the spread of the virus but also asked their officers to follow the set guidelines.
“Exercise maximum restraint and follow the steps of using guns as the commander in chief guided.”