7 Family Members Arrested for Assaulting Muslim Teen that Attended Church Service in Viral Video

In Eastern Uganda's Kibuku District, authorities have detained seven relatives for allegedly assaulting a teenage girl who had attended a Pentecostal church service. The incident gained widespread attention after a video of the assault circulated on social media platforms. The victim, identified as Shakira Naula, faced severe punishment, reportedly receiving 100 lashes from her uncles for attending prayers at a church led by Pastor Nicholas Kitibwa.

According to SP Samuel Semewo, the North Bukedi Regional Police spokesperson, Pastor Kitibwa reported the assault to the police after Naula, a resident of Bugolya parish, Kadama Sub County, was subjected to the punishment. The suspects, including Yusuf Nantege, Mohammad Wapesa, Jaberi Lumans, Uthuman Koosi, Issa Wasereye, and Ziyadi Musenero, were apprehended, with Musenero being the individual entrusted with Naula's care while her mother was away working abroad.

The assault allegedly occurred because Naula continued attending church against her guardians' wishes. On the day in question, she participated in an overnight prayer session and was subsequently assaulted upon returning home. The suspects are currently in police custody awaiting legal proceedings.

SP Semewo emphasized the need for parents to resort to legal and non-violent methods of discipline. Local leaders and government officials, including Kibuku LC5 chairman Mr. Mohammad Nakeba and Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs Balaam Barugahara, condemned the actions, asserting that such behavior contradicted principles of humanity and violated children's rights.

The incident also sparked discussions about religious freedom in Uganda, as enshrined in the Constitution. Article 29 section (C) guarantees every Ugandan the right to practice their religion freely, emphasizing the importance of respecting individuals' choices in matters of faith.

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