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Makerere University suspends guild elections after student is stabbed to death

The territorial Police at Kampala Metropolitan North have arrested three people believed to be part of the chaos in which a student of law at Uganda Christian University Kampala Campus identified as Michael Betungura Bewotti, 27, was murdered during the last guild Presidential open campaigns at Makerere University rugby grounds on Thursday.

The suspects are; Hon. Kabuye Frank who is detained at CPS Kampala, Ssekidde Allan currently detained at Wandegeya police station and Kabuurwa Muzafaru who is detained at old Kampala police station.

Eyewitnesses told journalists that a scuffle ensued between supporters of the NUP camp led by their guild candidate Lawrence Alionzi alias Dangote and FDC camp led by their candidate Justus Tukamushaba after supporters of the latter attempted to force their way through the entrance to the university Rugby Grounds where the NUP candidate was holding his last rally.

Makerere University guild presidential candidate for National Unity Platform (NUP) Lawrence Alionzi being carried by one of his supporters during campaigns (COURTESY PHOTO)
Makerere University FDC guild presidential candidate Justus Tukamushaba together with his supporters during campaigns. (COURTESY PHOTO)

According to Luke Owoyesigyire, the Kampala Metropolitan deputy spokesperson, it is during the campaign scuffle that ensued between the two Political party supporters which turned violent after a disagreement, that the deceased was stabbed by students in the NUP team allegedly led by Kabuye Frank among others. Owoyesigire noted that efforts to have other suspects traced are underway.

The Police were informed and upon reaching the scene blood stains believed to be for Betungura (the deceased), a resident of Kikoni Zone B, Makerere III Parish, Kawempe Division in Kampala were found inside Nsibirwa Hall where he hid there after the scuffle that led to his stabbing.

Photos and video footages that have made their way to social media showed a pool of blood on the floor of the bathroom where the victim is said to have tried to clean himself before he passed out and was rushed to the health facility. More gruesome photos also showed the victims face covered in blood as he lay on a bed at the Makerere University Hospital where the victim had been rushed for management.

The body of the deceased was conveyed to city mortuary Mulago for Postmortem from Makerere hospital where he succumbed to the wound.

“We have cordoned off the area, statements are still being recorded and CCTV footages will be retrieved to aid in the ongoing investigations. More details will be availed as soon as they are available,” said Owoyesigire in a statement.

In another development, Makerere University has suspended the guild elections slated July 15th 2022 together with the University’s Students Guild government following the unfortunate incident.

Excerpts from the letter in which the Makerere University guild council was suspended alongside the guild elections.

In a statement dated July 14, 2022, Lorna Magara, the chairperson of Makerere University’s council said that they are appalled by the violent events that have characterized the electoral campaigns for the 88th Students Guild leadership that resulted in the loss of the life of one of the supporters.

“The ongoing elections for the 88th Makerere University Students Guild leadership are suspended indefinitely; the Makerere University Students Guild is suspended with immediate effect,” reads the statement in part.

Magara revealed that management and the council have repeatedly engaged student leaders at the guild and SCR levels to address the violent behaviour but the engagements did not yield any results.

According to the chairperson of the Makerere University council, the suspension includes the Guild Caretaker Government and the Student’s Common Room.

The university added that it will also investigate all cases of violence in the election campaigns and report to the council for appropriate action.

The university is also set to meet on Friday, July 15, 2022, to consider further actions in order to address the indiscipline and violence that rocked the guild presidential campaigns.

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