20.10.2022: Mogadishu, Somalia
Ugandan soldiers that were found guilty of murdering 7 Somali civilians in the town of Golweyn last year have had their sentences reduced from death penalties to jail sentences ranging from 15 to 19 years by the Court Martial Appeal Court, overruling a previous decision made by a court in Mogadishu.
Among the convicted murderers include Captain Charles Asiimwe, CPL Edison Bwambale, Lance CPL Phillip Ichumar, and Pte Kerere Tushemereirwe.
What Happened in Golweyn?
Speaking to the Shabelle Media Network, the Governor of Shalanbood stated that AMISOM soldiers had rounded up and killed 7 Somalis in the town of Golweyn.
According to reports, AMISOM forces were travelling between the cities of Golweyn and Danow in the Shalanbood district when an IED exploded damaging the vehicle and possibly causing non-life threatening injuries to occupants.
Following the incident, AMISOM forces travelled to a near by farm owned by the deceased victim AUN Omar Hassan, rounding up a total of 5 individuals including his workers. The soldiers also stopped two individuals that were fixing their vehicle on the side of the road and executed them all.
According to bystanders and eye witnesses, some of the individuals were immediately executed with a bullet to the head.
“Their corpses were dragged 100 meters from the location of the crime. They were piled up and explosive devices were placed on the pile of corpse before being exploded“,
“We collected a leg from one location, an arm from another location, a leg from another location,”
“It is routine for AMISOM forces to travel on this particular road every few weeks to move supplies. They have always harassed and even killed innocent Somalis along this road”,
“We want the Somali people to see this. Remove these AMISOM forces. We want Somali soldiers”, said a relative of the victim speaking to Shabelle Media Network.
What about the Federal Government Investigation?
By late August, the then Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Roble pledged that the Federal Government would protect Somali citizens and the FGS “shall not allow any Somali to be harmed. The Somali citizen is untouchable.”
The PM also launched a Ministerial Committee to investigate the Golweyn incident composed of the Defence, Justice, Interior and Security Ministers however no findings were ever released by the government following alleged investigations.
PM Roble told Somali National TV that he promises to bring justice to the families and bring the culprits before a court of law however it seems as though that was an empty promise.