Buvuma district deputy internal security officer (ISO) Saul Ssimbwa has been arrested for allegedly assaulting New Vision correspondent for Greater Mukono.
Henry Nsubuga had gone for an interview at the resident district commissioner’s (RDC) office on Thursday morning when Ssimbwa assaulted him. According to Nsubuga, Ssimbwa found him seated on the verandah of the RDC's office, awaiting an interview, and questioned about his presence.
Initially perceiving it as a joke, Nsubuga was taken aback when Ssimbwa suddenly grabbed him by the neck. In the ensuing struggle, Nsubuga fell to the ground, where Ssimbwa proceeded to kick him twice in the back.
“I fell down, and at this time I could not help myself, shouting for help remained the only option left for me. The alarm I made attracted people nearby including both the RDC and her deputy who asked him what had happened, but he instead entered his office without saying anything.” Nsubuga narrates.
Nsubuga subsequently relayed the incident to the RDC, prompting him to order Ssimbwa's arrest. Patrick Mubiru, Buvuma RDC, regretted the incident, saying that they have already contacted their superiors to ensure appropriate disciplinary measures against Ssimbwa. Mubiru revealed that this is not the first time Ssimbwa has assaulted people seeking assistance at the RDC's office, citing a previous incident involving an elderly woman.
Vincent Kafeero, a resident of Kitamiiro in Buvuma, called for Ssimbwa's removal from duty, saying that he frequently threatens and assaults community members. According to Kafeero, Ssimbwa often boasts about his previous position as a senior officer in the elite Special Forces Command (SFC).
“He keeps on telling us that he was among the senior officers in the Special Forces Command and that within the command, they are trained to have less sympathy for common people. He has assaulted many here at Buvuma but most of the fear to reporting him to police,” Kafeero reveals.
Nsubuga is receiving medical attention at Buvuma health centre IV. Julius Nyonjo, the attending medical officer, confirmed that the assault caused soft tissue injuries to Nsubuga's back, encompassing damage to muscles, ligaments, and tendons. Assaulting individuals, particularly journalists, constitutes a severe offense that undermines press freedom and violates the rights of those fulfilling their professional duties.