PRESS RELEASE: VIOLENT BREAK IN AT HRAPF OFFICES
VIOLENT BREAK IN AT HRAPF OFFICES
Kampala, Monday 23 May 2016
Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum (HRAPF) urges the Ugandan government to conduct a transparent and swift investigation into the break-in to the HRAPF offices on 22 May 2016, during which the guard on duty was beaten to death.
Four assailants murdered Emmanuel Alituha in the early hours of 22 May 2016, who was the guard on duty that morning, and proceeded to break into the office building. Despite attempts to disable cameras and the alarm system, both remained functional and security camera footage confirmed the events.
The offices of the Executive Director and Deputy Executive Director were broken into and left ransacked. The assailants broke open all the drawers and cupboards and combed through documents and files. They took away a number of documents some yet to be identified, except for a certified copy of our Articles and Memorandum of Association and a flat screen TV, which was at the Reception. Surprisingly, computers, laptops and other electronic gadgets that thieves could easily take were all left intact including those near the window that was used to gain access to the main building.
The Police arrived at HRAPF at around 8:00am to investigate the crime scene. This was about two hours after they were first notified of the break in. They took samples of physical evidence.
This incident follows a spate of attacks on the homes of two of our staff members in the past one month in which laptops and phones were taken. HRAPF is also deeply concerned about this break-in and similar ones that have happened before at other Civil Society Organisations. Such break-ins of which the purpose is never clear frustrate important work that serves the interests of the common people.
We call upon the police to quickly complete the investigations, as we are very worried about the motive of this horrendous crime.