12 July 2018

Uganda: MP's Guards Accused of Assaulting Road Workers

Ntoroko — Police in Ntoroko District are investigating a case in which workers of BCR General Limited, the company that was contracted to construct Kakara-Rwebisengo Road were allegedly assaulted by the UPDF guards of the area Member of Parliament, Mr Gerald Rwemulikya.

Mr Drake Ategeka, BCR General Limited supervisor has told police that the company workers; Mr Godfrey Alala, a grader operator and Mr John Bosco Katusabe, a truck driver were on Sunday assaulted by Mr Rwemulikya's army guards.

The alleged assault have prompted all the workers to lay down their tools since Sunday.

The road construction workers have since abandoned their trucks and equipment at the scene

Mr Ategeka told police that the workers were assaulted at Makondo Bridge where part of the road was blocked.

"The MP who was driving from Rwebishego found two cars that had been stopped by the company workers at the spot to fix something. Before all cars could be allowed to proceed, the MP's body guards jumped out of his vehicle and started caning our workers accusing them of blocking a VIP," the Site Agent, Mr Richard Mwesige said.

The Project Manager Eng W. Musumba has written to the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) to intervene and secure security for their workers before resuming work.

UNRA's Fort Portal manager, Mr Felix Osoa has asked police to protect the workers.

Rwenzori Regional Police Commander, Mr Peter Nkulega wondered why the MP's guards assaulted the road workers.

"An MP is not a VIP to deserve a right of way. These workers are working on an important tourism road in Semuliki National Park, it must be opened and worked upon," he said.

Mr Rwemulikya, however, has refuted the allegations.

"I have been in Parliament for two years. My guards have never even pushed anyone," he said. "You cannot block the road with murram and a grader without leaving a passage for others. I parked my vehicle for more than 15 minutes before asking my driver to by-pass through the bushes, I was travelling from Rwebisengo to Kanara."

He denied instructing his guards to assault the workers because he is a law abiding citizen.

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