We strongly condemn the instrumentalization on the Uganda Police against Kulihoshi Musikami Pecos and other Refugee Human Rights Defenders Operating in Uganda
July 1, 2019(Nyamilepedia) — It was on Saturday July 29th, 2019 evening at around 17 hours of Kampala when Pecos received two phone call ( +256 704 581 393) from a person who identified herself as working at Criminal Investigation Division of Kabalagala Police Station in Kampala Uganda.
The conversation on phone focused on where I was, what I was doing, where I stay here in Kampala and who supports me in my work, then later she informed me that a case was opened against me on two issues: Planning to hold an illegal demonstration by refugees here in Kampala and sharing on my Facebook Page the Photos of a refugee by names on Artur Masingo who is the complainant. After explaining to her then we agreed that I report to her Office on Monday July 2nd, 2019 at 12pm.
What happened exactly?
Last week there were Posts on “Refugee Leaders Media” whatsup group about refugees camping at the offices of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kololo – Kampala Uganda. Reports indicated that these refugees have been there for long wanting the attention on UNHCR about their problems but in vain. Then these refugees contacted Pecos and asked him to intervene for them. Together with his other two colleagues Pecos visited these refugees on Friday June 28th, 2019 and realized that they are living in so much deplorable conditions and to make the situation worse, it is raining every day here in Kampala. Pictures about where these refugees are staying are on the attachment.
Our attempt to meet some UNHCR Officers and discuss with them about this issue was futile as the security Officers from the Uganda Police Force could not allow us to seek for the audience, on ground that refugees are not allowed to meet UNHCR Officers in Kololo and told us to go to InterAid Uganda.
In the evening Pecos initiated an activity of mobilizing some refugees here Kampala calling upon them to come and camp at UNHCR Offices in Kololo in Solidarity with other refugees who are staying there in order to attract the attention of UNHCR to solve their problems.
In reaction to this campaign the Congolese Refugee Community which was established by a click of people from InterAid, OPM and UNHCR, circulated a message on Whatusp on Saturday July 29th, 2019 opposing that initiative calling it illegal and warned refugees from participating in it. But so far refugees were already sharing the message Pecos wrote in various social media and asking others to join.
But also Pecos shared this message on his Facebook with images showing the situation on refugees and how difficult the situation is and why it is urgent for UNHCR to intervene. Some among these images were published in various Whatsup groups by members of the Congolese Refugee Community. It is on this ground that Pecos received a whatsup message from one called Artur Masimango who is in charge of social affairs in the Congolese Refugee Community giving him 5 minutes to delete the photos on his Facebook account and if not he would report me to the Police, which he did.
Basing on what is on ground, we believe that Masimango did not act on his own behalf, we believe that he may have been instructed by some individuals within the refugee regime to destabilize Pecos and other Refugee Human Rights Defenders in order to affect the call for action at UNHCR Offices and in order to scare refugees would like to move up to UNHCR Offices.
Let us remind ourselves that the Congolese Refugee Community was fabricated last year 2018 by the following people within the Refugee Regime: Samuel (excutive Director of InterAid Uganda), Kusasira Darlson (Community Services Officer at the Office of the Prime Minister Department of Refugees), Patience (Protection Officer at the Office of the Prime Minister for Refugees) and Carol Musoke ( Protection Officer at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees ), in order to control the movement of vocal refugees who are playing different roles by standing up for refugee rights and in helping in different ways the investigations into Refugee Scandal in Uganda. Some members of the Congolese Refugee Community are used as spies against other refugees, they are used by the Police either as complainants or as witnesses in cases opened against other outstanding refugees, and they do all character assassination, blackmailing and other harm against refugee human rights defenders in order to weaken them.
With the situation refugees are facing at UNHCR Offices in Kololo, our conscience tells us that we cannot remain silence, and we cannot afford being indifferent anymore because we fear the worst for the those refugees.
While we do pledge that we shall not give up to any form of intimidations we do clearly state that our intention is to see a UNHCR clearly concerned about the situation refugees are facing which are created by human beings within the refugee regime, we only want to see UNHCR taking positive steps towards the solutions of the problems of these refugees but also for all others who have urgent issues especially the most vulnerable and voiceless in different refugee communities.
We shall remain mobilized and carry out more other non-violent actions in case our demands are not responded to positively, as we call upon this time the Uganda Police Force not to interfere with refugees who are demanding for what they should be given,
We call upon your support to ensure that UNHCR opens up options for engagement rather than arguing that refugees have no claims and manipulating the Uganda Police Force to harass and brutalize these refugees, and ensure that refugee human rights activists operate in safe environment,
We call upon your support and lobbying to InterAid Uganda, OPM Department of Refugees, and the UNHCR to dismantle this group of Congolese Refugee Community and to ensure it is not harmful to other refugees,
The Executive Committee