Bwanika Piles Pressure On Gov’t To Ban Teargas


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website like this geneva;”>Speaking at a weekly press briefing held at Melting Pot in Kampala on Thursday, Bwanika explained that the chemical components of teargas can lead to cancer, blindness, permanent lung damage, still birth and miscarriages and in some instances, heart failure.

“I call upon police and other security organs to use other means to restrain people if it wants to do so other than using such destructive chemicals that can lead to permanent life problems,” Bwanika pleaded.

He further stressed that the way the police uses teargas in Uganda is very distortive where security officers always throw teargas canastas at masses causing even the innocent to suffer of this dangerous chemical weapon.

Bwanika has therefore called upon the United Nations (UN); to come up with a law that internationally bans the use of teargas in dispersing crowds but this should also be adopted and followed by the Ugandan Government.

“We know that over 70 countries worldwide have banned the usage of teargas in their countries and Uganda should also follow this so that we can protect our people from a weapon that is dangerous to the lives of people,” Bwanika noted.

Facts About Tear Gas And Pepper Spray

Tear gas, formally known as a lachrymatory agent or lachrymator is a non-lethal chemical weapon that stimulates the corneal nerves in the eyes to cause tears, pain and even blindness.

Tear gas works by irritating mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, mouth and lungs, and causes crying, sneezing, coughing, difficulty in breathing, pain in the eyes, temporary blindness, among others.

With CS gas, symptoms of irritation usually appear after 20–60 seconds of exposure and commonly resolve within 30 minutes of leaving (or being removed from) the area.

With pepper spray (OC gas), the onset of symptoms, including loss of motor control, is almost immediate, forcing the victim to abandon aggressive behaviour in 90% of cases.

As with all non-lethal, or less-than-lethal weapons, there is some risk of serious permanent injury or death when tear gas is used.

This involves risks from being hit by tear gas cartridges, which includes severe bruising, loss of eyes, skull fracture, and even death.

While the medical consequences of the gases themselves are typically limited to minor skin inflammation, delayed complications are also possible: people with pre-existing respiratory conditions such as asthma, who are particularly at risk, may sometimes require hospitalisation or even ventilation support.

Skin exposure to CS may cause chemical burns or induce allergic contact dermatitis.

When people are hit at close range or are severely exposed, eye injuries involving scarring of the cornea can lead to a permanent loss in visual acuity.


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