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Kakwenza Rukirabashaija was also held and allegedly tortured last year after writing The Greedy Barbarian, a novel about high-level corruption. FILE PHOTO | DAILY MONITOR | NMG


The European Union (EU) has joined other rights bodies in demanding the unconditional release of Ugandan novelist and activist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, held incommunicado for more than a week despite court ordering police to free him.
In a tweet on Wednesday,  Mr Eamon Gilmore, the EU special representative for human rights, urged the authorities in Kampala to release Mr Kakwenza, who was kidnapped by gunmen on December 28 and disappeared until police acknowledged holding him.

“Uganda: I’m alarmed by reports of alleged torture and incommunicado detention of author [Rukirabashaija Kakwenza]. He remains in detention without trial, despite a court order for his unconditional release. I urge Ugandan authorities to uphold rule of law and due process,”  he tweeted.

Mr Gilmore’s concerns were shared by Ms Maria Håkansson, the ambassador of Sweden to Uganda, who expressed “full support” for the EU representative.  

The EU delegation to Uganda, which manages the “EU-Uganda relations, programmes and activities” also supported the call in response.

Mr Gilmore, a former deputy prime minister, and minister of foreign affairs of Ireland is charged with enhancing the presence, effectiveness and visibility of EU human rights policy in the EU external actions.

Police say they are holding Mr Kakwenza on allegations of offensive communication after a series of belittling, derogatory and abusive tweets about President Museveni and his son, Lieutenant General Muhoozi Kainerugaba (Commander of Land Forces). Daily Monitor

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