The Minister of State for Internal Affairs, Gen David Muhoozi, has spoken out on the heightened incidences of murder in the Greater Masaka region, which has resulted in the death of at least 26 people in a period of two months.
While addressing Parliament on Tuesday, Gen Muhoozi said that the patterns of these killings are similar and usually take place between 20:00hours-22:00 hours of the night, by assailants waylaying the victims and attacking vulnerable people in their houses.
Apparently, the attackers who use motorcycles and foot also use the same killing method of hitting the victims on the head with blunt objects.
According to Gen Muhoozi, these murders are not motivated by proprietary gain since nothing is usually taken from the victims.
“However, these criminals in some few incidences use snatched phones of victims, to communicate to the relatives of the victims. Whatever the motive, the intended effect is to cause fear, terror and apprehension in the public,” Gen Muhoozi said, adding that a number of suspects in the districts of Lwengo and Bukomansimbi have been apprehended and the cases are being processed for prosecution.
The former Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) assured the public that more security personnel will be deployed to patrol the affected areas in order to restore community confidence and prevent escalation of the problem.
“Senior Security leaders have been tasked by the NSC (National Security Council) to go to the affected areas on spot assessment and to work out on effective plan of action with the area district security agencies in order to decisively deal with this insecurity, bring the culprits to book, and return normalcy to the affected areas. The recourse to this reprehensible, immoral approach of killing Ugandans is shallow and untenable and will be defeated,” Muhoozi said.
Muhoozi called for urgent need for provision of adequate logistics to intensify the operations within Masako, Lwengo, Rakai ond Bukomansimbi Districts in order to arrest the culprits and have them prosecuted. He also promised to table a proposal to cabinet that the government organizes some compassionate assistance to those families that have lost loved ones or had their people injured.
The Leader of the Opposition, Mathias Mpuuga, called for bi-partisan debate to address killings in Masaka saying the House should consider sending the Committee on Defence to Masaka for firsthand information from the communities. MPs were however, divided on the recruitment of LDUs to curb the insecurity problem in Masaka, as others called for use of technology like security cameras to track criminals.
Deputy Speaker Anita Among directed that political leaders of Greater Masaka work closely with security and go on the ground to solve this problem. She called for a special budget for the same.