GENERAL SUBMISSION BY POLICE PROSECUTOR, SENIOR SUPERINTENDENT OF POLICE SAMUEL EKEILLOT, IN A POLICE DISCIPLINARY COURT. FIVE POLICE OFFICERS WERE ACCUSED OF BEATING AN EX-WORKER OF MUKWANO GROUP OF COMPANIES.
The incident constituting the offence for which the defaulters were charged received wide coverage on the electronic and print media. The incident attracted wild condemnation from the human rights bodies and the general public.
Some sections of the public were heard asking, “Are these police officers?”
Unfortunately, the answer is yes.
They are police officers.
Mr Chairman, when giving sentence, I want you put in mind that the image of the Uganda Police Force that has been badly soiled. From a narrow angle the defaulters are on trial, but from a wider perspective the entire police force is in the dock.
Human rights bodies and the public are closely watching and following this trial, and they are anxious to know whether the conduct of the defaulter is a matter of individual error or it is a force policy.
The sentence that will be given by this court will either acquit or convict the police force.
Members of the force are also watching. The majority, who prescribe to professionalism and have the force image at heart, have placed their hope on this court to clean the dirt that has been caused to the force by this incident.
Other members of the force, who have the intention of committing similar acts, will either be deterred or encouraged by the punishment the court will award in the sentence.
Mr Chairman, all the defaulters pleaded not guilty and throughout most the trial they tried to create the impression that what they did was right.
This stance is dangerous.
The defaulters’ continued retention in the force if given another opportunity, they will likely to commit the same offence.
In spite of the different memos of participation by each defaulter, each has continued to deny wrongdoing.
Prosecution prays to this court to treat this matter as a cancer.
Mr Chairman, when cancer attacks any part of the body some cells may be seriously infected while there is less infectious on some. To treat cancer, the best way is to cut off the most infested part.
In conclusion, prosecution prays to this notable court to give a sentence that rids the force of the indiscipline.
A sentence that reassure the human rights bodies and public that the force doesn’t condone indiscipline and that the acts of defaulters aren’t force policy. A sentence that gives the right thinking members of the force, who are the majority, a sigh of relief. Finally, a sentence that deters any member of the force.
Mr Chairman, prosecution doesn’t see this without going for a maximum sentence.