Global Doctors’ body condemns torture in Uganda

By JOSEPH TUMWESIGYE

Friday September 7, 2018

 

The World Medical Association (WMA) has condemned what it calls torture and Mistreatment of detainees in Uganda. In a statement on the institution’s website, there global association further denounces the governments efforts to deny detainees access to specialized medical care.

Over the past few weeks, the government of Uganda has undergone condemnation from the rest of the world due to claims of torture on individuals that were arrested on 13th August, 2018 in Arua. The individuals who include Kyadondo East MP, Robert Kyagulanyi commonly known as Bobi Wine and Mityana East MP, Francis Zaake had deteriorated in health while in police custody which led many to believe that they had undergone torture.

Statements of what happened while in custody from Bobi Wine did not help the government at all as the “Ghetto President” insisted that he was tortured by police personnel after being arrested in Arua.

READ MORE: Bobi Wine narrates Arua Ordeal

The President of the WMA, Dr Yoshitake Yokokuru has written a letter to Prime Minister, Ruhakana Rugunda to express his organization’s disappointment of what he terms as ‘the pervasive practice of torture in Ugandan detention places’.

The letter calls on the Prime Minister to take effective measures ‘to prevent and stop such intolerable shaming practices’.

‘Such activities are especially disappointing, since Uganda is one of only 10 African countries with anti-torture legislation and is a signatory to the United Nations Torture Convention’ the WMA president said.

The letter to the Prime Minister does not only focus on the incidents that have happened in the past few weeks but goes on to set out details of the violence and rape that the Uganda Human Rights Commission discovered when it visited detention centers.

The letter further backs the Uganda Medical Association’s (UMA) call to respect the rights of patients. On 30th August 2018, Bobi Wine and Francis Zaake were arrested at Entebbe airport as they were trying to board planes to take them to the USA and India respectively for further treatment.

READ MORE: MP Francis Zaake arrested at Entebbe Airport

“Torture and other cruel or degrading treatments are one of the gravest violations of international human rights law,” Dr Yokokura said.