10 July 2019

Uganda: House Summons Gen Odongo Over City Killings, Robberies

Parliament — Parliament yesterday summoned Minister of Internal Affairs Jeje Odongo to explain the rising spate of killings in the city despite the government's astronomical investment in the purchase and installation of surveillance cameras (CCTVs) in Kampala and other urban areas.

Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga tasked the minister, who was not present in the House, to present a statement to Parliament by Tuesday next week.

Not even Mr Obiga Kania, the State minister for Internal Affairs, was present. "Minister of Internal Affairs should explain the killings and most of them are women," Ms Kadaga said.

The Speaker's directive was prompted by Nakaseke South MP Paulson Luttamaguzi Ssemakula and his Gomba West counterpart, Ms Robinah Rwakoojo.

The two cited recent killings, targeting mobile money operators and boda boda motorists.

Ms Rwakoojo narrated incidents in which two of her voters David Ngabirano and Julius Musisi early this month lost their motorcycles in separate incidents.

One of the number plates was allegedly recovered during a police operation in Katwe, a Kampala suburb.

Ms Rwakoojo said one of the victims only known as Fred was gruesomely murdered and his motorcycle taken.

"They steal, kill the owners and dismember their bodies. My prayer is that the police and ministry of Internal Affairs should take charge," said Ms Rwakoojo.

Mr Luttamaguzi, on his part, said Parliament has in the past approved billions of shillings to procure CCTV cameras which the government said would aid police to curb crime through modern crime tracking.

"Mobile money operators work in fear, they close their shops early in fear of being killed. We need an explanation from the Minister of Security or Internal Affairs on why the cameras are not working," said Mr Luttamaguzi.

Mr Luttamaguzi asked the Speaker to compel government to make CCTV cameras affordable by the population in order to guarantee security.

Ms Kadaga said, while preparing the statement for Parliament, Gen Odongo should consider the proposal to waive taxes on CCTVs.

Forces involved

Early in May, three army 'deserters' of the Uganda People's Defence Forces were arrested in connection to robberies of Mobile Money agents in the city.

They included; Emma Onen Ochan, Stanley Muluta aka Frank Jjumba, and a one Denis Mwanguhya, after a joint operation by security agencies.

Attempts by Daily Monitor to get a comment from the Internal Affairs ministers were futile by press time.

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