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BBS’s Katumba survives ‘Panda Gari’

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BBS’s Katumba survives ‘Panda Gari’

Presenter Katumba Gerald appeared in a video with bruises on his face, which he attributed to people uncomfortable with his work as a journalist


BBS Terefayina’s journalist Gerald Katumba, mostly known for presenting Omunaala current affairs show, has said he narrowly escaped getting kidnapped by unknown people.

Although the video is generally unclear as to when and whom he suspects to have been behind the raid, as well as the circumstances preceding his alleged kidnap, Katumba faintly suggests that his captors could have political ambitions aimed at silencing him from doing his journalistic work.

In a video that is circulating on social media, the former presenter of Omunaala, a political and current affairs show on Terefayina says he was saved by alarms made by people who knew him and a Boda Boda rider who whisked him away after personally resisting illegal arrest.

He also associates his attempted kidnap with the ongoing panda gari operations in which supporters of National Unity Platform are being kidnapped, tortured by state security agencies.

“I was saved by alarms from the public but I sustained bruises inflicted on me by the men who attacked me. I however want to assure you that they are not goings to prevent us from addressing the issues,” Katumba said in the video.

The confusion surrounding Katumba’s plight arises from the fact that he had political ambitions and attempted to stand on NUP ticket, which probably led to him being asked to step aside from the show.

But when The Sunrise contacted BBS’s Chief Operations Officer Stephen Dunstan Busuulwa, he confirmed Katumba remains their staff and that they had deployed the company lawyer to trace him with the view to boosting his security or resolve any potential problems that might have led to his uncertainty.

Robert Ssempala, the Executive Director of the Human Rights Network of Journalists Uganda (HRNJ) says they have received complaints from him alleging that he was being followed by unidentified people.

Regarding the latest video, Ssempala says he believes that Katumba is genuine in saying he was being abducted.
“We have gotten in touch with some people to try to give him security and any other assistance we can afford,” said Ssempala.

The Kampala Metropolitan deputy police Spokesperson Luke Oweyesigyire said he was unaware of the development or of any warrant of arrest out for Katumba.

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