The Acting Gulu District Police Commander, Joseph Ayiki, aged 33, who has been dropped to the Police Standards Unit pending investigation into the distances how he was shot injured by an Exposs Security guard at the TAKS center on 29th November has said he didn’t climb over the fence, but entered through a small gate at about 1:00AM.
He said he went to the Through Art, Keep Smiling (TAKS) centre, behind Acholi Inn in Gulu municipality alone, neither armed nor clad in the police official uniform just to check and pick some friends.
He said having had a busy Tuesday quelling developing strike at Gulu University, he had arrangements with his friend, the District Police Commander (DPC) and the OC CID of Adjumani district whom he thought were waiting for him (Ayiki) at the TAKS center.
Ayiki said before he left for the TAKS center on foot, dressed in a civilian shirt and a pair of light-blue jeans and not armed; he had shown up the Gulu Central Police Station (CPS) at about 12:05 AM of that the fateful Tuesday night.
“When I left the CPS, I walked to the TAKS center and reached in about 5-10 minutes. When I reached I knocked at the main-gate made Bamboo wood, but there was no response. I moved to the small-gate and knocked. And again there was response. I decided to push the door and went inside the compound of the TAKS center. While there, the place was well-light but I could not see anyone. I talked asking for help, but there was no response. I then decided to sit on one of the plastic chairs that were many on the compound. I picked my phone so that I could start dialing the telephone number of my friend, the DPC of Adjumani, but realized that my MTN Paka-paka Airtime had expired many hours ago. I could hear some low voices coming from one of the small houses within there, but no one came out to help me.
“I then got up and started walking back towards the small-gate where I had come from, and then I saw someone walking towards and suddenly shout to stop me. He ordered me in Lwo language, saying ‘bed piny’, meaning ‘sit down’, but I could not understand until he used a body language that could mean he was telling me to sit. I did not comply, but he repeatedly shouted in a strong voice then I went on my knees down while raising my hands.
Again he shout in another Lwo word saying ‘but piny’, meaning lay down. I also did not comply because that spot was very wet and muddy because it had the previous night. He asked me to introduce myself to him I both Kiswahili and English, but when I tried to do so, he could understand me and could not also give me time to talk while I was lying down. But the guy surprised me with a bullet in my thigh. He just shot at me using a bullet”, Ayiki explained.
Ayiki said after the guy (Askari) he saw in an unidentified uniform had shot him, he stepped aside from him to talk on phone with someone he did not know.
“I then used the opportunity to remove his canvass shoes from his legs and pulled out the shoelaces and used them to quickly fasten his right thigh to avoid over bleeding because he still had the energy. And when the guy (Askari) shortly returned, I heard a truck coming and I was carried by some people including a UPDF soldier who I think came from Acholi Hotel after hearing a gun-shot and carried me in the truck. I only realized after sometime that I was in the hospital after I first regain a bit then I backed off (went unconscious)”, Ayiki explained further.
Ayiki said he could not neither dress in the police official uniform, arm himself, nor pick either a body-guard or escorts because he was on private mission, not official work.
“It is not true that I climbed over a fence. First of all, there is not proper wall at the TAKS center. The place just has Bamboos that can one cannot climb over. I just thought I could quickly go meet and pick my friend (DPC) Adjumani and go for a short wedding meeting with them since he was to wed this coming Saturday. We have arranged earlier to meet at around Pagoda in town. But little did I know the DPC and the OC CID had already left for an emergency in Adjumani in the Afternoon of that Tuesday when I was busy sorting out the threatening strike by Gulu University students”, said Ayiki.
Ayiki was laying on his bed at Lacor Hospital in Gulu where he has been admitted since he was shot injured on Tuesday, November 28.
He said his condition was steadily improving and hopes to get out of the hospital in about a month time. He was able to get up and move supported by a four-roller trolley to and from his side-room toilet and to the bed by the time The New Vision visited him by 1:30PM yesterday (on Wednesday).
He is being looked by a lady who identified herself only as ‘Never Joseph’. Ayiki declined to disclose whether he is married or not because of security reasons.
“I would not like to endanger my family members. So, don’t mind about her name”, Ayiki said in jolly mood.
Ayiki before he was transferred as Officer in-charge of Station (OC-Station) in about June this year (2017) and later made Acting DPC of Gulu, he had served the OC-Station at Jinja East in 2016.
He similarly served as the OC-Station at Bwoma-Mawokta, South Mpigi district in 2011-2016, after he was the Office in-charge of Integrated Highway Police command at Katonga, commanding Gomba and Mpigi districts between 2011 and 2016