Hustle for Justice: Police forced parents victim to bury son twice

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From her teenage son being shot dead, to being forced to exhume his body and later having to re-burry him at the family’s own cost, the story of the mother who has only harvested tears from Uganda’s political contests that she is not part of can melt the hardest of hearts.

Hajjara Nakitto, the mother to a 15-year-old Amos Ssegawa killed in the November riots says she was abandoned by Government after promises of helping her. 

Although Nakitto held her son close by as they fled the central business district of Kampala that was full of chaos from gunshots and tear gas, Ssegawa did not survive a bullet to the mouth. 

A peaceful protest on Monday demanding to see Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga but ended in a battle with police opened doors for Nakitto to meet with Kadaga.

Nakitto who today met the Speaker of Parliament in her boardroom alongside her husband Meddie Semugenyi and their young daughter described how the family was abandoned while she was going through the trauma and pain of the death of her child.  

Nakitto told Kadaga that the family had failed to get justice from police following the death of their son Ssegawa who was a senior two student at Lubiri High School (Buloba Campus).         

She narrated her traumatic experience after police made them exhume the body of their son to carry out a post mortem report which would indeed confirm that her son succumbed to gunshot wounds. 

She says that they were made to incur reburial expenses and to date they have never received justice for what happened.  She says after the death of her child, her life was messed up as she couldn’t work, and lost all her savings on related expenses.

Kadaga directed police to trace for the security officer who shot Ssegawa using footage from CCTV cameras installed in Kampala. She said the other Ugandans who innocently died should also be accounted for and those responsible held accountable.         

She has also questioned the delay by the government to compensate families who lost loved ones during the riots.

President Museveni said the state would separate those who were innocently killed from the rioters and the families of those innocently killed would be compensated.  

Erasmus Twaruhukwa the Director of Human Rights and Legal Services at Uganda Police who attended the meeting said that they had submitted all the names of the affected persons to the Office of the President and all was being done to ensure they were compensated.  

Kadaga however, challenged him saying several people were not registered nor were their contacts taken.  

Ssegawa is one of the 54 people who were killed in the two-day protests which erupted in Kampala and other parts of Uganda following the arrest of presidential candidate, Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine in Luuka District on November 18, 2020.


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