Monitor scribe quizzed over Dr Besigye’s story

Tabu Butagira and his counsel James Nangwala leaving Special Investigation Unit offices in Naguru on Wednesday. Photo by Andrew Bagala.

Special Investigations Unit detectives interrogated a Monitor Newspaper senior journalist for over three hours over an interview he carried out with Forum for Democratic Change President Dr Kizza Besigye.

Senior journalist, Mr Tabu Butagira, who was summoned last week, appeared at SUI headquarters at 10am on Wednesday in company of Monitor Publications Limited Company counsels, Mr James Nangwala and Mr Timothy Ntale but was released at around 12:20pm.

Mr Nangwala said Mr Butagira recorded a statement regarding an interview which was published in the Daily Monitor on February, 28 titled “Besigye; I can’t rule out war”.

“Mr Butagira was called to assist police investigations regarding a story. He has recorded a statement,” Mr Nangwala said.

He, however, said they were unable discern a criminal case on which his client was being investigated.

“He wasn’t told about the case they summoned,” he said.

This is the second time Mr Butangira has been summoned to police to clarify on the story he had written. He was summoned to explain some of the phrases in the story about Lady Justice Mwondha in 2009.

It has become common for police to summon journalists, their managers and opposition politicians whenever they write stories critical of the government and its officials.

Several Monitor journalists are battling state in courts of law over similar stories.