Enanga: We strongly condemn the criminalization of civil matters in the police
Enanga explains that adultery is not a criminal offence
Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A Police officer at the rank of Inspector of Police is in trouble for arresting a couple engaged in adultery, yet it is not a criminal matter.
Fred Enanga, the Police spokesperson identified the officer as Inspector Julius Ogwang attached to Kira Road Police Station, who registered a complaint from an unidentified man that his wife was sleeping with another man, and went ahead to arrest the two victims.
“The officer who registered the case, IP Ogwang, is arrested and charged with discreditable conduct, which upon conviction, can lead to a dismissal from the force. Ogwang in conspiracy with the husband of the woman, arrested two in a hotel room, and interrogated them on camera, in a manner that was violating privacy,” Enanga said.
Enanga explained that adultery is not a criminal offence but rather a civil one according to police mandate. Therefore, criminalizing it was an unprofessional act and abuse of authority, which has led to the arrest of officer.
“We strongly condemn the criminalization of civil matters in the police,” Enganga said.
Enanga said that the action taken against this officer is to a sound a warning to other undisciplined officers, who look to gain from proceeds of their selfish interests at the expense of the Police mandate.
He says the role of the police in civil conflicts, complaints and disagreements is to protect life and property only.
According to police mandate, a victimized married person can only report such matters to police if the complaint is for elopement, where one elopes with a married person and stays with them, or trafficking in persons.
“A victim can only report such matter when another person uses his or her power or positions of superiority and takes advantage of the victim’s vulnerability or disability, and under domestic violence, where the victim is tortured physically or emotionally, by the sexual behavior of a married partner,” Enanga clarified.
Adultery evidence can only be used as a ground for civil processes like divorce, separation, custody of children and sharing of property.
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