By Joseph Julian
Catholic and Anglican archbishops in an East African country sent a strong and critical message to the government for failing to secure people’s lives in the wake of rampant kidnaps and killings across the country.
The Uganda prelates; Archbishop Cyrian Kizito Lwanga of Catholic faith and his counterpart Archbishop Stanley Ntagali of Anglican Church in Uganda respectively, the duo used their Easter messages to scold government and urge Ugandans to reject the growing culture of death.
Whilst delivering his message at his office in Rubaga Cathedral near the capital Kampala; Archbishop Lwanga of Kampala Archdiocese challenged government to strengthen the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) to stop the criminal gangs now on rampage.
“Many people are being kidnapped and killed. These days, when you get out of your house, you are not sure whether you will come back alive or dead. The investigations department has failed to provide reports about these,” he said in reference to the trending kidnaps, disappearances and brutal murders of young people, women in particular.
No worries, I was sending a you tube link with related Archbishop Cyrian Kizito Lwanga attacking the Museveni and criminal spies:
The CID has been on the spot over failure to conclude investigations into hundreds of murder cases, across the country, including those of former Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP) Andrew Felix Kaweesi, several Muslim clerics, and women in urban areas around Kampala. And the November 26, 2016 Kasese massacre in which over 150 civilians including children were murdered government forces. No inquest has ever been set to investigate what became to be known as November 2016 Kasese Masscre.
For the past 4- years, bodies of young women have been discovered in the neighbouring districts of Kampala with conspicuous resemblance, which raising the presence of a possible serial killer at work leaving the local population terrified. All the young women, who have been brutally murdered are aged between 18 and 35, each of them was raped, and all of them had sticks inserted into their vaginas.
There have also been widespread cases of office and house break-ins. Strangely, the wave of reak-ins at over 37 offices of civil society organisations across the country, but no suspect ever been apprehended, which raises more fears among the people. Non-government Organisations (NGOs) have had their offices broken into, security guards killed, computer and important documents stolen. In the recent past, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) investigated and made a report which suggested that, pattern of attacks that indicate the perpetrator who enjoy impunity.
The unsolved killings by the police lately forced the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) to swing into action to arrest the escalating insecurity.
Archbishop Lwanga said the offenders must be brought to book regardless of their positions and status in society.
“The gruesome killings and abductions that are happening against innocent children, women and men are appalling. We call upon government to act on this and bring the offenders, including government officials, to justice,” he said.
In almost similar message, whilst echoing his Catholic counterpart, the Church of Uganda Archbishop Ntagali asked Ugandans to use the Easter season to renounce the growing culture of death and embrace the culture of life that Jesus offers through his death and resurrection.
Archbishop Ntagali said the delayed solution to the killings constitutes actions contrary to Jesus’ teachings that promote life.
“The increasing deaths and the seeming inability to do anything about them is part of our current culture of death. This is not the way of Jesus,” the Anglican Bishop said at Namirembe Cathedral in the capital-Kampala. The Archbishop further expressed sharp disapproval of hospital workers for stealing drugs and lambasted officials seeking to legalise abortion.
In January 2018, the US State Department issued a warning to its citizens intending to travel to Uganda. (Read: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/traveladvisories/uganda-travel-advisory.html).
In the first week of February, 2018, a 28-year-old Susan Magara an account, was kidnapped, a one million USA dollars ransom was demanded. The kidnappers cut off two-of-her fingers and sent it to the parents. On the 21st day in captive, her body was discovered after the parents paid only US$200,000 to the kidnappers.
Ms Fatuma Sendagire Nabiwemba, a senior prosecutor at the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), was kidnapped in December 2017, only to be set free in February 2018, after a huge ransom was paid.
In February 2018, a 27-year-old Isaac Makubuya, a computer specialist, he received a call to go and repair a computer somewhere the capital Kampala but hasn’t been seen again.
In February 2018, Philip Tumwebaze, a bio-informatics specialist went missing a week to his wedding, which was slated for March 3rd, 2018 and hasn’t been seen again. Tumwebaze had before been a victim of kidnap in 2008, but was arrested in Rwanda on suspicion of being a spy.
In December 2017, Mulago hospital dentist, Dr Kenneth Majoku was kidnapped. Dr Majoku regained his freedom in January 2018, 3 police officers had been involved and they took UGX 5.4 million (approximately US$1,450) before his release.
On September 18, 2017, Gerald Yashaba was kidnapped by men aided by a Police Superintendent, Gerald Edyegu. A huge ransom was paid before Yashaba regained freedoms.
On March 14, 2017, a four-year-old Faith Emmanuel Poni, a daughter of Emmanuel Daud Tombe, the South Sudan Consul in Uganda was kidnapped from Kampala Parents School, kept hostage for 4 days and a ransom of UGX 18,000,000 (approximately US$4,860) was demanded before she was released.
In January 2016, a case of 31-year-old Saidat Kabanda, was filled as SD/07/02/16, at Sanga Police Post-Masaka, 159 kilometres south west of the capital – Kampala. According to Ms Kabanda’s brother, the Makerere University graduate was presumed dead because; her two-best-friends had previously brutally murdered with both bodies discovered with signs of rape and sharp sticks inserted into their vaginas.
In a case filed at Kampala Central Police Station (CPS) as SD/18/02/2015, Bidiche Nganga Bora, a Dr Congo national disappeared and hasn’t been seen again. Another case of disappearance, a 29-year-old lawyer, Setaala I. Semugenze was filed as SD/045/15/10/15, at Mbarara CPS. Setaala, who then doubled as one of the directors of Sab Restaurant in Kampala has never been seen again, since he was arrested in October 2015 alongside other political activists.
On January 15, 2015, Eriafasi Kafeero’s body was discovered, wrapped into a polythene bag and case was filled as vide CRB/015 /2015, at Mukono Police Station.
In the neighbourhood areas, another case of the body wrapped in a polythene bag was filled as vide CRB/ 348/2015, at Seeta Police Station.
Across the city, Kajjansi on Entebbe Road, 18 kilometres, south of the capital Kampala, a case of body wrapped in polythene bag was discovered and filed as vide CRB/ 164/2015.
Since 2015 only 26 people have been rescue by their relatives after paying huge ransoms. In many incidents, perpetrators are believed to be working within formal security agencies. Though, government switched off all unregistered phone numbers for the civilian population: security agents do still use unregistered numbers.