KAMPALA–The Online Media Publishers Association (OMPA) is demanding the unconditional release of detained investigator news journalists.
This follows the arrest of Stanley Ndawula, the proprietor of Investigator News and Robert Ndawula, a reporter of the same online media house by police yesterday.
The duo were reportedly arrested on Tuesday night after being interrogated at Police’s Criminal Investigations and Intelligence Department (CIID).
OMPA is an umbrella organization that brings together online media platfoms.
Police say Stanley and Robert are being held on charges related to offensive communication under the Computer Misuse Act.
“Stanley, who has previously criticized the police leadership, alleges some powerful officials in the law enforcement body want him remanded at Luzira Prison,” said Giles Muhame, the proprietor of Chimp Reports, an online newspaper, in a statement issued today.
Muhame said Ndawula was denied police bond and was whisked away to Kiira Road Police Station in Kampala where he is currently detained.
Stanley has in particularly been criticised by the Police leadership in the past over his investigations and reports into the killing of former Police spokesperson Andrew Felix Kaweesi in March this year.
The Investigator has also covered extensively the recent arrest of senior police officers by the Chieftancy of Military Intelligence over various crimes. It has been alleged that some of the arrested police officers have also been linked to the murder of Kaweesi.
“We call on Police authorities to stop this arbitrary harassment of journalists and respect freedom of the press,” OMPA stated.
Meanwhile, the past few days have seen journalists in run-ins with police.
New Vision weekend editor Felix Osike was summoned yesterday and interrogated for hours, over a story published in Saturday Vision, saying security at Gen. Kale Kayihura’s residential home was beefed up. Osike was released on bond but told to report to CID headquarters every week.