UPDF blocks lawyers from representing Museveni effigy beater ” Ferdinand Ruta “

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By Kaweesa Hope Mulangira

UPDF blocks lawyers from representing Museveni effigy beater ” Ferdinand Ruta ” . Whisper Eye News

Mr. Ferdinand Ruta was on 15th February 2021 arrested by Uganda Police in Kampala over allegations of caning/flogging an effigy of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.

Since 1823 Merriam Webster dictionary defines effigy to mean an image or representation especially of a person, or a crude figure representing a hated person.

Ferdinand accuses Museveni’s government of rigging the just concluded presidential elections and also voiced his concern on the rampant state-sponsored drone abductions of opposition supporters.

He was held eventually by the military and whisked away from Kampala-based Central Police station to military-controlled custody according to his family members.

The UPDF went on to charge him in some of its courts described as Unit Disciplinary Committee (UDC) of illegal possession of military stores despite being a civilian.

That on February 25, his lawyers successfully through a filled habeas corpus, high court order, directed UPDF to produce him to court on March 2 for further orders of the court.

Chapter Four described the charges against Ruta as an abuse of legal process.

However, on Tuesday 30th March 2021, Makindye military police blocked Eron Kiiza and other lawyers, from representing Ferdinand Ruta and also accessing and legally representing him before the military court – a Unit Disciplinary Committee (UDC).

According to Eron Kiiza a human rights lawyer, The military in Makindye said they do not allow lawyers who are not in UPDF to represent clients there.

Mr. Eron Kizza described the developments as unconstitutional, and an arbitrary abuse of Ferdinand Ruta’s human rights.

It reinforces the military court’s bias, incompetence, and partiality. He added

Every citizen has a right to legal representation of choice. Ruta Ferdinand was denied the same today when his lawyers were not only blocked from accessing and representing him but also chased from UDC premises. the human rights lawyer added.

Whisper Eye’s efforts to get a word from the Military spokesperson was futile by the time of this story.


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