EU demands immediate release of Ugandan author Kakwenza

Wednesday January 26 2022
Ugandan novelist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija.

Ugandan award-winning novelist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija was bundled into a vehicle by unknown people shortly after being released from prison on bail. PHOTO | COURTESY


The European Union has called for the immediate release of Ugandan author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, who was picked up Tuesday by suspected security operatives minutes after a Court in Kampala set him free on bail.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the EU and embassies of its member states in Uganda said the arrest of the author is “a clear disrespect to the rule of law and the right of a Ugandan citizen to a fair trial.”

“We express our serious concern at reports that Ugandan writer Kakwenza Rukirabashaija has been taken against his will by armed men and is again being held in an unknown place of detention,” the statement says.

The EU and the diplomatic missions of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden and Norway in Uganda have been critical of the regime’s human rights abuses.

“Mr Rukirabashaija should be released immediately and we appeal to all parties concerned to ensure that the rule of law and due process are upheld in this and all cases in Uganda,” they said.

The author was picked up Tuesday by unknown people suspected to be security operatives, moments after being freed on bail on medical grounds.


Shortly after being freed from Kitalya prison at 2.30pm, men dressed in plain clothes forced him into a tinted double cabin vehicle that had no number plate and then drove off, his lawyer Eron Kiiza said.