A human rights activist has had her uterus removed because of intense bleeding while giving birth following an alleged injury she suffered after police assaulted her.
Ms Annette Nana Namata, a single mother of five, went to the police headquarters in Naguru on April 24 to demonstrate against police dispersing of the Forum for Democratic Change rallies and the deployment at the home of Kyadondo East MP, Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, in March.
Ms Namata yesterday told Daily Monitor from Kampala Independent Hospital in Ntinda, where she is still admitted, that she was also protesting against the killing of Ronald Ssebulime by police.
In September 2018, Ms Namata stormed a meeting on tax policy in Kampala and grabbed a microphone from the speakers, saying government was not doing much to take care of its citizens.
Though in pain, Ms Namata remains defiant. She was yesterday reading a book, From Dictatorship to Democracy by Tony Ben.
The gynaecologist, who carried out the C-Section to remove a foetus, said Ms Namata got a hematoma [clotted blood] on the uterus “as a result of a blunt object.”
After the assault, she was taken to Iran-Uganda Hospital, a medical facility run by the police where several tests were carried out.
The police spokesperson, Mr Fred Enanga, confirmed that the lady had sued police.
“The problem is that some of these activists mistake indiscipline with activism. But since she has gone to court, our legal department will respond accordingly,” he said.
This is the the Daily Monitor’s full interview with Ms Annette Nana Namata:
I see you in pain, what happened?
On April 23, the day before I was beaten, I went to the police headquarters and spoke to one Kalulu. This was in the office of the operations. I gave four points as to why I intended to demonstrate against police decision that Mr Kyagulanyi cannot be allowed to do what he wants. They had camped in his home in March.
The second reason, I had personally taken note of constant harassment of Dr Kizza Besigye and his party members. I asked him [Kalulu] where human rights stood in the middle of this escalating abuses.
The third reason was the killing of Ssebulime. I told him that these things were hurting us. I told him that Ugandans could be quiet about it but they haven’t forgotten.
And the fourth reason was that I have read the Constitution and I know very well that police was overstepping its mandate. I told him that I wanted those four
I wanted police to tell us whether that was their mandate. He listened and said, “Well, those are good points” but said he was in the office of the operations and I couldn’t give me full response. I said I would come back tomorrow ( next day).
We even joked and I told him that I will come prepared. I told him that I would come to camp there like you are camped at Kyagulanyi’s home until these questions are addressed. I went away.
On 24th like he had suggested at around 10am, as I was on my way there, I sent out a post on Facebook of a wrapped up mattress, bottle of water and a copy of the Constitution-both in Runyankore and English.
I drove over to Naguru. But I noticed there was an unusual deployment at the gate. The policemen were dressed in blue uniform. I am told it’s a field police uniform. There was a barricade and there was a man who walked over and asked where I was going and by show of arm, I showed him the office.
He asked: For what? I told him; to meet the IGP [Martins Okoth-Ochola] or his deputy [Maj Gen Sabiiti Muzeeyi]. They said they didn’t have any communication. I told them that I had been there before and I had not known that there was a practice of having permission to go see anyone.
Did you remain seated in the vehicle?
Yes, I did. Then I saw several policemen surrounding my car. I later parked my car well to give way for other drivers.
But as we spoke, more officers continued coming. I noticed there was a senior officer who came and I told him that I was here to meet the IGP. He asked me: are you on appointment? I told him: Not confirmed. But I again told him that I had been there the previous day. After asking me, he stepped aside and made a phone call. I heard him saying that I was alone.
In the meantime, there were women officers who came. One of them was knocking on my vehicle, threatening me in broken Swahili. She was telling me how tough she was.
What was your response?
I told her that she was “murdering” that language [Swahili]. She started throwing fists in the air, saying men were dilly-dallying with me. I asked her why she was so angry. I told her that we were not in a fight.
She continued threatening. One of her seniors came and pulled her away. He asked me again what I was doing there. I repeated that I was going to see the IGP or his deputy. But things started moving very fast and all of a sudden I was surrounded.
What was going through your mind?
I started feeling uncomfortable and opened the roof and get a breather. I realised something unpleasant was going to happen. They tried to open the car but failed. Then a woman came and told me to get out and take me to the IGP’s office. I told her that I knew where I was going. In a very short time, I don’t know how they managed to open the car. They started spraying teargas in the car.
I completely exited through the roof and stood on top to avoid suffocation. They entered the vehicle and it was shaking. The senior officer ordered that they should pull my legs. He jumped and pulled my leg and those inside pulled another. Another man climbed and the two started pushing me by the shoulder to enter through the open roof.
Those inside were pulling my both legs. I fell inside. That particular woman who was notorious pulled my pants off along with the inner garment. I screamed and told them not to undress me. She was asking me: “Tell me what your rights are?” My T-shirt was wet and the body was itching.
I remember a man’s voice saying: “Stop spraying, that woman is heavily pregnant.” And the notorious woman replied: “You think we don’t know? It is our right to help her deliver.”
There was a scuffle inside the van. Every part of my body was being pulled. The same woman was in my groin. I screamed in pain. I grabbed her hair. The other officers were trying to grab my hand to push it away from her hair.
Her hand was advancing into my private parts. In that scuffle, I remember being pulled me out of the car with legs spread at 180 degrees. My lower garments were almost off. My belly was out.
Another woman twisted my hand while asking me why I had pulled the officer’s hair. They lifted me in the air and left me to fall by my back. I remember vomiting when I fell. That notorious woman came and lifted my chin and I remember her telling me “swallow your stuff”. The only thing I remember was seeing the same notorious woman stepping on me.
What happened later?
I woke up and saw people surrounding me. I realised I was in a hospital. The first thing I did was to scream. They told me not make noise that because I was in hospital and I was okay.
Who had surrounded you?
They were dressed in civilian clothes and I saw one doctor’s name tag called Dr Kato. I woke up when they were trying to look for a vein to connect to a drip. I told them not treat me because I already had a hospital where I used to go for antenatal.
They asked me which hospital and I told them Kampala Independent Hospital. One of them said if you don’t want, we shall do it because the baby is in distress. They put me on a drip. I was in so much pain and couldn’t pass urine.
How old was your pregnancy?
It was about six months. One hand was hooked to a monitor to examine my blood pressure and the other was on a drip. They kept calling me Stella, Stella, Stella, don’t resist, your blood pressure is very low and your heart can stop beating anytime. From a distance, I could still see uniformed police officers.
Later, two policemen came and identified themselves as Agaba Godson and Josephine Kakule. They asked me to narrate what happened and I asked them if I was under arrest. I first asked for my phone to communicate to my people. They refused but one doctor later asked me to give him the number I wanted to call. I gave him my aunty’s number who later came.
I continued asking Agaba to use my phone. Dr Kato told my auntie that I had experienced a leg trauma, which they were managing and that they would discharge me in the evening. While there, two activists came to see me. They told me they watched it on TV.
Later, I was wheeled and taken to the parking lot and got my phone from the car. They continued refusing to give the referral. While there, many people started coming including Dr Kizza Besigye. They later organised an ambulance and I was brought here [Kampala Independent Hospital].
What happened when you came here?
I was examined and told that I had a hematoma on the uterus as a result of a blunt object. When asked what it was, I was told its clot. They also put a catheter in my bladder and the urine came out. I stayed here until another doctor advised me to get a bed rest in another hospital. But I decided to go for the bed rest at home because of the costs.
Because of the continued pain I was advised that the removal of the baby needed to happen sooner rather than later. The wait would bring more complications. It was on June 17 when I came here and the gynaecologist decided to remove the baby on June 18. I went to the theatre expecting C-section but complications arose.
The operation that was supposed to take a few minutes ended becoming five hours because of the hematoma on the uterus, I also had raptured bladder. I bled so much. I was told that because of intense bleeding, my uterus had to be removed. I had to spend three days in the Intensive Care. The baby was also in the nursery because it was a premature.
Don’t you think it was a sign of irresponsibility that you got involved in such situation when you were heavily pregnant?
I have never been a violent person. I never expected it.
What do you do?
I have a book shop in Ntinda. But even my landlady has closed it because she refused to accept the money for rent.
Article of Daily Monitor
You Madam,this is my advice.As you are baptized,I hope you are a true Christian.
Jesus forbids us from joining polical activities.We must stay neutral as to political affairs.The fine fight for all true Christians is "to preach the God’s Kingdom" to people in order to change them and become true Christians themselves.
Our Sword is the Bible,not Kalashnikov.As Daniel 2:44 says,when the Kingdom of God will come on the Last Day,it will crush all the worldly authorities.The Kingdom of the whole Earth will be given to Jesus as Revelations 11:15 says.Jesus will transform Earth into Paradise.That is why in Matthew 6:33,he asked us to "seek first for the Kingdom of God",instead of looking for money first as people of this world do.This will make them lose Eternal Life and Resurrection as the Bible shows.