UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | On Thursday 23rd March 2023, hundreds of residents were forcefully evicted from government land surrounding Mandela National Stadium, Namboole, amid shots fired by Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) soldiers which injured civilians.
Mr Moses Wambi, 20, and Mr Warren Nuwamanya, 43, both boda boda riders, were shot and sustained bullet wounds during the eviction exercise.
Mr Wambi said he was riding past the deployed security team when he felt his arm was paralyzed.
“Then I saw blood oozing from my body. I then realized that I had been shot. I was taken by well-wishers to the health center for treatment,” Mr Wambi said at Gwatiro health facility where he was admitted.
Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesman Patrick Onyango, confirmed the civilians were injured by stray bullets.
“Wambi was taken to Gwatiro Health Centre where he is undergoing treatment while Nuwamanya was taken to a clinic in Kireka,” Mr Onyango said.
The eviction exercise was carried out after the government hired UPDF construction brigade to renovate the stadium and build a fence around it, as people had started encroaching on the land’s periphery plots.
The government had bought land at Namboole and constructed a stadium in the early 1990s. The affected residents had been using a culvert to access and exit the fenced land.
The stadium authorities gave the residents until 15th February 2023 to vacate the land. Some of the encroachers left the land while others defied and demanded compensation.
UDPF Releases Statement
In a statement following the incident, the UPDF Deputy Spokesperson, Col Deo Akiiki said the eviction exercise was successful, but along the way, some few people attempted to resist, which forced UPDF soldiers to fire in the air. In the process, a stray bullet injured Mr Wambi.
Col Deo Akiiki accused the affected residents, who he says were led by the area vice chairman, Mr Godfrey Kawooya, of attacking their engineers with machetes, stones, arrows, and bows.
“The security detail protecting the site and workers shot three warning shots to disperse Mr. Kawooya’s gang, but in vain. Chaos ensued, and three of our soldiers were injured, including Pte Maseruka Jackson, whose fingers were cut by panga-welding gangs,” Col Akiiki said in the statement.
Col Akiiki added the UPDF Engineers Brigade will continue to carry out their work and will not be deterred by the acts of provocation by illegal encroachers on the property. Security has been beefed up at the stadium, and citizens are called upon to respect public property to avoid unnecessary injuries and loss of lives.
UPDF remains committed to executing the president’s directive of ensuring timely, cost-effective, and quality projects in order to deliver much-needed services to the people, said Col Akiiki.
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