Caught in the riots: Tales of bullet victims

Friday November 27 2020
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Masudi Luzzeg’s lower mouth was damaged after he was shot in Nakifuma during riots on November 19. PHOTOS/ DAVID LUBOWA

By Nobert Atukunda

At Mulago hospital still lay a number of bullet survivors following the riots across different parts of the country after the arrest of Opposition presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine.
Various patients are in grief, pain and misery as they nurse wounds.

Following the tales of patients and caretakers, most of the victims were not part of the demonstrations.
As of yesterday, there were 15 patients nursing wounds at Mulago hospital. 
According to a police report, the death toll has risen to 50.
Masudi Luzzeg 
Just one glance at Luzzeg, you can tell he is in immense pain after his lower mouth was damaged after he was shot at around 8pm on the fateful Thursday in Nakifuma.
His caretaker, Mr Badul narrates that Luzzeg was shot on his way back from buying food by police officers.
Luzzeg found tyres being burnt on a route that leads him home.
Unfortunately for him, the people who lit the tyres ran away but he was stopped by police officers who shot him without asking him anything.

“They stopped him and shot him. Other people had run away already. They called me at around 9pm and told me, my brother had been shot. I found him at causality ward at Mulago,” Mr Badul narrates.
Luzzeg is currently unable to talk or close his mouth. As he tries to listen to the people speaking around him, he is filled with pain in his eyes with strained veins that are seen on his face.

The caretaker said they are seeking financial support to buy medicine and take care of the victim.
“He is getting rotten on the affected part. They are asking us for a lot of money. They have told us they need Shs10m to give him plastic teeth yet we don’t even have money to buy medicine. I need help. I have called people in the village but people do not have money,” he said.

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Abraham Bishamika

 Abraham Bishamika
From his appearance, Mr Abraham, a 39-year-old mechanic, seems to be recovering.
 On Wednesday 18, when the riots broke out in the city, Bishamika was in the New Taxi Park where he works. He says he did not know what was going on and everything happened abruptly.
Still wondering what was happening, he was shot while at Luzira stage in the leg for reasons he does not know up to now. With no boda boda, taxi or ambulance in sight, Bishamika painfully limped to Kisenyi Health Centre where he was later transferred to Mulago hospital.

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Alex Kalanzi

Alex Kalanzi
Kalanzi’s was shot in the upper thigh, with the bullet narrowly missing his private parts. The injuries he sustained affected his urinary system.
Kalanzi, who was coming from work in Masaka at the time of shooting, says after escaping the first bullet narrowly, he decided to run for his life but unfortunately in the process he was shot.
In the same ward is another victim whose story is not any different. 
With confidence he is not afraid to show the State Minister for Primary Health care, Dr Moriku Kaducu, his private parts that were injured as he added that he is in so much pain.

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Leopold Nyakahuma, 22

Leopold Nyakahuma, 22

Everything at work in Kisekka in Kampala City was going on well for Nyakahuma until the demonstrations started. Nyakahuma narrated that due to chaos, he decided to head to Gadaffi Road like other people. 
However, they were welcomed by police officers, who chased them away and he thus decided to get a boda boda to find his way out. While approaching Ham Towers, the motorcyclist was stopped by a police officer, he, however, did not stop.
Nyakahuma said the officer, whom he remembers having the pips of an Assistant Inspector of Police, shot the motorcyclist, who fell down. At this point Nyakahuma, who also fell, decided to run but was shot in the leg twice.
“I also decided to run, the police officer shot me. The first bullet hit me in the leg, but I kept on running, he shot again and I jumped and fell in some fence. I lost all the energy. He found me and sprayed my eyes with tear gas. I was later put on the patrol car,” Nyakahuma recounts.
He added that: “I told him ‘you have shot me,’ but he said I hurt myself while jumping.”

At this time, he was bleeding and in too much pain,.
“They got other people and took us to Wandegeya Police Station. The officer-in-charge told them to take me to Mulago causality ward. The bullets were taken out and I will be taken to the theatre for cleaning,”  Nyakahuma said.

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Justine Namambo, 28

Justine Namambo, 28
Ms Namambo, a mother of one child, was returning to Mukono at around 6pm from work when calamity befell her. She was travelling in an omni-bus with windows shattered by stone-throwing rioters.
Ms Namambo was shot and currently has a bullet stuck in her spine.
Her husband, Mr Andrew Hadali, received a phone call from his wife who only managed to tell him, “They have just shot me in the back,” and she went silent. 
Luckily, someone who was close to her picked up the phone and told Mr Hadali what had happened.

“Another person who might have been near got the phone and said I think she has been shot. I asked ‘where are you?’ and she told me she is in Seeta where I headed.  I reached her at around 7:30pm. I found her in Mukono at a health facility, she was in bad shape,” Mr Hadali recounts.
With so much pain and tears rolling down her face, Ms Namambo said all she wants is the bullet taken out of her body. Mr Hadali says he is not satisfied with the care that is being given at Mulago.