By Keefa Nuwahereza
A senior Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) officer at the rank of Major is currently hospitalized and battling for his life after he was clobbered by goons while he was enforcing the COVID-19 curfew in Kyankwanzi District on Tuesday May 26th, 2020.
According to sources, Maj. Maj. Robert Nkwasibwe was rushed to Hoima referral hospital unconscious after being attacked by goons late in the night during a patrol with fellow officers.
Army spokesperson, Brig. Richard Karemire, revealed that Maj. Robert Nkwasibwe was commanding a patrol when the joint security team was attacked by locals.
Brig. Karemire stated that; “On the night of May, 26, 2020, a group of drunkards at Gala trading centre in Kyankwanzi district attacked a joint patrol of police and UPDF who were enforcing the night curfew in the area. On arrival at the centre, a UPDF Maj Robert Nkwasibwe who was commanding the patrol at the time was seriously clobbered on the head and neck rendering him unconscious.”
The army spokesperson explained that part of the group that was drinking hit Nkwasibwe from behind, forcing him to fall helplessly onto his back unconscious, before he was rushed to Hoima referral hospital for further management.
“Reports indicate that Maj.Nkwasibwe could have sustained serious head and neck injuries,” Karemire noted.
Brig. Karemire however, said the patrol later arrested 12 suspects as others ran away,leaving behind eight motorcycles and three bicycles which were impounded and taken to Rusozi Police station as investigations continue.
It should be noted that on a number of occasions, security personnel have been attacked while enforcing the presidential directives.
Last month, a UPDF officer lost an eye after being attacked by an unknown group of people in Bibia Municipality in Amuru District while enforcing the presidential directive on curfew.
The army spokesperson said the latest incident is the 70th attack on security forces since the announcement of the presidential directives on the lockdown as a way of combating the spread of Covid-19.
“UPDF, Police and other security forces have often times called upon the population to desist from flouting the directives for the sake of their lives and avoid being confrontational. This puts both the forces and wanainchi on the risk of contracting Covid-19 as well as injuries from attackers or even uncalled for injuries resulting from self defense by the forces,” Brig. Karemire cautioned.
He revealed that a hunt is going on for all the other suspects still large and they will be arraigned in court to answer several charges when apprehended.