18 January 2013

Tanzania: 10 Lynched in Kagera in 2012

Bukoba — OVER 10 people were lynched in 2012 in Kagera Region, police have said. According to police reports, among those who were killed by angry mobs, four were police officers.

On September 9, last year, an angry mob lynched one Faustine Rweyemamu (60) from Ndolage village in Muleba District accusing him of abducting a girl on superstitious beliefs.

The mob broke into a police post where the suspect was being held, took him out to the streets and stoned him to death. Again on December 15, last year, two traffic police officers in Ngara District identified as Cpl Paschal and Constable Alexander and a civilian Said Mkonikoni (24) from Mugoma village were killed in skirmishes.

An angry mob later set ablaze a police post at Mugoma, destroying various properties whose value has not been established. A few weeks later two police officers were killed at Kasheshemisha village in Karagwe District. Kagera Regional Police Commander (RPC), Mr Philip Kalangi named the slain officers as E 1446 Sgt Thomas Migiro and E 8889 Cpl Damas Kashala from Benaco police post in Ngara District.

He said the two policemen were trailing a suspected gang involved in smuggling elephant tusks after getting a tip from Good Samaritans. They arrived at the Kasheshemisha village posing as buyers and started negotiating with the sellers.

However, after the deal went awry and the officers took the tusks, one of the dealers raised the alarm by claiming that the officers were bandits who had robbed him of his goods. Villagers then put up a road block and lynched the police officers when they stopped, even after they introduced themselves as cops. Another policeman, identified by a single name as Brighton, managed to escape unhurt.

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