Human Rights Committee To Visit Nalufenya on Friday, Terms of Reference Issued
The Human Rights committee of Parliament will visit Nalufenya Police detention center in Jinja tomorrow May 19th .
The committee’s Friday visit stems from a directive from the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga yesterday, asking the legislators to investigate allegations that the facility is a torture chamber for suspects detained there.
Parliament this week extensively debated concerns by Kadaga, questioning the recent torture of Kamwenge town council mayor, Geoffrey Byamukama, whose pictures at Nakasero hospital showing deep cuts on his knees and legs sent shock waves across the country.
The pictures were a center of debate in Parliament where legislators across the political divide slammed the Police for torturing Byamukama, as well as other suspects implicated in the murder of Assistant Inspector of Police, Andrew Felix Kaweesi early this year.
Nalufenya detention center was also in the spotlight after a number of MPs accused police of using the facility as a torture chamber.
Kadaga condemned the acts, terming them as crimes against humanity.
In a letter dated April 18, 2017, the Clerk to Parliament, Jane Kibirige wrote to the chairperson of the committee and Mitooma Woman MP, Jovah Kamateeka, giving guidelines by Parliament to investigate allegations of torture at Nalufenya.
One of the terms is to establish the legal status of Nalufenya especially in regard to detention of suspects; visit the cells in Nalufenya and assess the condition of the suspects detained there and inquire from the detained suspects about allegations of torture by police officers.
Others are to inquire from police officers and in charge of the facility about allegations of torture of suspects and generally establish the authenticity of the allegations of gruesome torture of suspects detained at the facility.
During the plenary sitting yesterday, Speaker Kadaga informed the House that the committee will be expected to report back to Parliament on Tuesday next week with a report on their visit.
Kadaga further revealed that the sitting on Tuesday next week will solely be dedicated towards debate on the issue of torture of suspects in Nalufenya and other detention centers.
She tasked the Minister of Internal Affairs to present a comprehensive report on the matter, while Ndorwa East MP, Wilfred Niwagaba is expected to present a motion, condemning the acts on torture and a call for action.