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Uganda officials ignore criminal summonses for LGBTQ torture

A Ugandan town councilman and a Ugandan prisons officer each ignored a summons requiring him to show up in court yesterday to face criminal charges of torture and inhuman and degrading treatment.

The charges, originally sought by the gay-friendly Human Rights Awareness and Promotion (HRAPF), are connected to the arrest of 20 men at an LGBT homeless shelter in March and their imprisonment for 50 days.

HRAPF stated today:

Yesterday [Aug. 26] our legal team went to the Chief Magistrate’s Court of Wakiso to represent seven (7) COSF members in Criminal Case No.505 of 2020, which arose out of a complaint of torture against Hajji.Abdul Kiyimba, the LCIII Chairman of Kyengera Town Council, and PO Philemon Woniala, the Deputy Officer in Charge of Kitalya Mini-Maxi Prison.

This was in response to criminal summons that were issued by the Chief Magistrate, requiring Hajji.Kiyimba and PO Woniala to appear in court on 26th August 2020, at 11:00 a.m., to answer charges of Torture, contrary to Sections 2 and 4 of the Prevention and Prohibition of Torture Act. Neither PO Woniala nor Hajji. Kiyimba showed up in court, despite being served with the Court summons.

Unfortunately, the Chief Magistrate handling the case was also not in Court. We were informed by one of the Clerks in the general Court Registry that she was handling cases in Kigo Prison, and that we would have to get the next hearing date from her Clerk. Efforts to get in touch with the clerk in order to get a new date have so far been futile.

Going forward, we intend to follow up with the Clerk to the Chief Magistrate in order to get a new hearing date. We also intend to apply to the Court to issue arrest warrants for Hajji.Kiyimba and PO Woniala, in light of the fact that they disregarded the summons that required them to appear in Court yesterday.

This article was published by 76 Crimes.


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