Uganda to investigate Kalinga torture claims

BY IGNATIUS SSUUNA

UGANDA has assured Rwanda that they will investigate whether Acleo Kalinga, a Rwandan national, was tortured by Kampala’s security agencies.
Bedridden Kalinga, 37, claims to have been detained in 2005 and tortured by Uganda’s security agencies.  Kalinga is currently in poor health conditions and admitted at Carrefour Health Centre in Kigali.
Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Minister Dr Charles Murigande disclosed yesterday that he has contacted his Ugandan counterpart Sam Kuteesa over Kalinga’s issue.
“My Ugandan counterpart said he did not know about Kalinga but he promised that Uganda would investigate the matter,” Murigande said.
Kuteesa couldn’t be reached for comment by press time.
Earlier, Murigande had met Kalinga who briefed him about the alleged torture.
Kalinga says he is suffering from internal bleeding, partial deafness and loss of vision, lack of taste, partial paralysis and psychological trauma.
 “I am suffering from endless bleeding through my anus but I don’t have money to go for serious medical treatment,” Kalinga said from his sick bed in Kicukiro, a Kigali suburb.
FACT-RWANDA, a local Humanitarian NGO that addresses issues of torture and organised violence rushed the Kalinga to Carrefour last month while in critical condition.
“Many doctors at King Faisal have examined me. They say I need urgent medical attention but I have no even a single cent,” Kalinga lamented.
Dr Alex Bwandinga from King Faisal had earlier confirmed that he examined Kalinga and said his predicament was very worrying. 
But he declined to discuss the medical details surrounding Kalinga’s health on phone.
Kalinga returned to Rwanda May this year after a Ugandan politician Hussein Kyanjo demanded for his immediate release from police cells.
He won his freedom after fortunately meeting at Uganda’s Central Police Station with Kyanjo, the Makindye West MP who had also been held over a Kampala demonstration against the Mabira Forest giveaway.
Kalinga narrated his ordeal to the MP who publicised the plight of the Rwandan shortly after he was released.
Kalinga alleges he had been transferred through several detention centres (safe houses) because he was thought to be a spy for Rwanda.
Dr Charles Ntare, the Executive Secretary FACT-RWANDA said yesterday that Kalinga needs urgent medical attention.
“We are trying our best but we are overwhelmed because his case is very big. Saving his life first is the issue now,” Ntare said yesterday.

 

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