Alleged victim arrested in Uganda Athletics Federation sexual abuse scandal

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Uganda

May 6, 2014 (ISN) – A Ugandan female athlete who accused coach Peter Wemali of sexual harassment has been arrested in Kapchorwa for allegedly poisoning two of her teammates.

The 17-year-old, whose identity has not been revealed, was detained but later released by on police bond.

She had earlier deserted the athletics camp, along with several other runners, as part of a demonstration to protest against the lack of punishment for Wemali, but later returned to the facility.

An unnamed teammate claimed the arrested athlete, the youngest member of the squad that represented Uganda at the Africa Cross-country Championships on March 16 at Kololo Airstrip, was set-up as an act of retaliation for her fleeing of the camp.

“She was lured to return to the camp by some officers who told her that Wemali had been suspended,” she told Uganda’s Daily Monitor.

“We warned her not to go back but she never listened to us.”

“When she got there, Wemali was in camp and called for a meeting with all the athletes.”

“During the meeting, two of the girls complained of stomach pain and were taken to hospital.”

“Later, we were told they checked in her bag and found rat poison.”

“She was detained.” 

“But we know it was a set-up.” 

“She can’t do such a thing.”

Kapchorwa District sports officer Tunde Musawo said the young athlete was hit hard by her arrest.

“She came out of the cells crying,” Musawo said.

“Since the matter is under investigation, I don’t want to say much.”

“But that girl is a key player in the sex scandal, which makes her arrest suspicious.”

“She has returned to her home but we hope the matter will be dealt with.”

The two poisoned runners were reportedly admitted to Kapchorwa Hospital and discharged the following day.

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