Police in Ntungamo district is holding a college principal over allegations of sexually harassing his female students after numerous complaints about his conduct, and the last victim who acted as the whistle-blower for the arrest.
The suspect, Gaston Twesigye, principal of Ntungamo Comprehensive Vocational College, is reported to having made a habit of asking sexual favours from his female students and employing punitive measures when his advances were rejected including: withholding their examination results, holding their examination papers and giving them unfounded retakes, among others.
The Rwizi Regional Police spokesperson Samson Kasasira, confirmed the arrest saying that Twesigye was apprehended yesterday Thursday September 29, at the Resident District Commissioner (RDC) office where he had been summoned to answer for the allegations.
“The principal was arrested on September 22 from the RDC’s office where he had gone to respond to the allegations. The RDC ordered his arrest after finding out that he was a habitual sexual harasser. We have since preferred sexual harassment charges against him ahead of his arraignment in court,” he said.
Twesigye’s recent victim recounts the tricks and threats that he used to try to get her to give in to his advances and to punish her for rejecting him.
Ronah Natukunda, a student pursuing a certificate in Records and Information Management at the college, said that Twesigye once declined to submit her examinations to the Uganda Business and Technical Examination Board (UBTEB). She would go for months without collecting her results because Twesigye insisted that she collect them in the late evening hours.
“One day he chased me out of the examination room claiming I had a fee balance that I needed to first clear. It took the intervention of some lecturers for him to allow me in, an hour later. I spent a year at the college without being able to see my own examination results apart from being told by friends since it was a college practice for students to get their results personally from their lecturers. When I would go for mine, he would tell me to come in the evening which was a bit tricky,” Natukunda said.
However, in his defence, Twesigye claims that the allegations have been fabricated by his competitors to destroy his reputation.
“I do not know what these girls are saying. I know someone must have used them just to tarnish my name because I cannot do something like that,” he said yesterday.
Following the arrest, other students came out to testify against Twesigye, with some providing evidence.
The RDC, Geoffrey Mucunguzi, confirmed the complaints and evidence saying that Twesigye is waiting in police custody to be arraigned in court.