Police have confirmed arrest of officers who arrested a “cheating couple” last week.
In a video that went viral on social media, the two victims appeared being arrested and interrogated on camera after they were allegedly nabbed cheating.
Police say the manner in which the two were arrested violated their privacy.
According to police spokesperson Fred Enanga, following the incident, a purely civil matter, was criminalised in being responded to by Inspector of Police, Julius Ogwang Of Kira Road Police Station
Enanga says the arrest of the cheating couple by the police officers was unlawful since adultery is no longer a criminal offence in Uganda.
“Adultery, is no longer a criminal offence in our country. Therefore, criminalising it, is an act of unprofessionalism and abuse of authority, which the force cannot tolerate,” Enanga noted.
He condemned the criminalisation of civil matters in police adding that IP Ogwang Julius, the officer who registered the case, was arrested and charged with discreditable conduct, which upon conviction, could lead to a dismissal from the force.
However, Enanga cautioned all married persons whether in estranged, complex or sensitive relationships, to respect the sanctity of marriage and use lawful means, instead of smearing one another’s reputation.
He further warned that in some instances, adultery, can be used as a ground for civil processes like divorce, separation, custody of children and sharing of property.
Other areas where the public, in conspiracy with selected officers, criminalise civil matters, are private debts, where thousands are threatened with arrest.
The police mouthpiece warned that the arrest of the officers should act as a warning to other undisciplined officers, who look to gain from proceeds of their selfish interests, at the expense of the force’s mandate.
“The role of the police in civil conflicts, complaints and disagreements is to protect life and property,”
Enanga however, noted that there are other circumstances, where victimised married person, can report their matters to police.
These according to him include complaints of elopement, where one elopes with a married person and stays with them, trafficking in persons, where a person uses their power or positions of superiority and takes advantage of the victim’s vulnerability or disability, and under domestic violence, where the victim is tortured physically or emotionally, by the sexual behaviour of a married partner.
Enanga further emphasised that the alleged actions of the officer, do not represent the majority of exceptional police officers, who go above and beyond the call of duty, to protect the community, each and every day.