Teargas canister thrown by police during Makerere University protest shatters student's hand

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A Makerere University student has lost his hand after being shattered by a teargas canister that exploded after being thrown by police that was quelling a students’ riot.

Police was forced to use teargas to disperse rowdy students who were protesting against online classes after the full reopening of the economy.

However, according to fellow students, during the protest, police fired teargas and, in the process, one of the canisters landed into the room, Richard Ssebuggade, 24 a medical student and resident of Lumumba hall and in the process of throwing it out, it exploded into his hands.

A statement released on Wednesday afternoon by the Kampala Metropolitan deputy Police spokesperson, Luke Owoyesigyire indicated that circumstances surrounding the incident are still a mystery.

He said the incident was reported to Wandegeya Police Station at around 5:49pm by the Dean of Lumumba hall.

“It is alleged that on Tuesday, Police engaged and moved with students to Wandegeya Police Station to help secure bond for their colleagues that had been detained at the same facility. After securing the bond, Police escorted all the students back to the university at Lumumba hall and they all went to their respective rooms of residence, and order was restored.

“However, at 5:49pm, we received information of the injured student who is currently admitted at Mulago Hospital after allegedly picking up a tear gas canister that blasted off his hand. “

Owoyesigyire said a team of investigators has been dispatched to look into the matter .

He added that investigations will help them ascertain facts regarding the incident but also look into negligence of their officers who were quelling the protest.

 Past incidents

There have been such incidents in the past, especially during protests by university students.

In 2019, Abraham Kansiime, a student of bachelor of Automotive and Power Engineering at Kyambogo University lost his hand that was shattered by a teargas canister.

Kansiime had tried to pick up the canister and haul it back at police officers during a violent student strike.

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