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Uganda police officer charged for assaulting journalist

January 15, 2015

A Ugandan police officer was charged Thursday for assaulting a journalist covering a protest march against high unemployment.

Joram Mwesigye, a superintendent in charge of a police division in the capital Kampala, was charged with assaulting local television journalist Andrew Lwanga, as well as damaging two cameras.

Lwanga remains in hospital after being beaten during the protests on Monday, where Ugandan media claimed the officer used electric cables in the assault.

“Mwesigye… has been charged with three counts including assault and occasioning bodily harm to a local journalist, Andrew Lwanga,” police spokesman Fred Enanga told AFP.

The police officer was released on a bail of 800,000 Uganda shillings, some 280 dollars.

The Uganda Journalists Association has condemned “police brutality on journalists”, adding that 10 reporters in all were injured or had their equipment damaged.

Dispatches from AFP concerning freedom of information, censorship and news coverage in regions where independent media is under threat.