Police has started investigating to thwart the new spate of insecurity in the greater Masaka area, the Minister for Security, Maj. Gen. Jim Muhwezi has told Parliament.
Muhwezi confirmed on August 24, 2021, reports of machete wielding men that have yet again attacked the districts of Lwengo, Masaka and Bukomansimbi, leaving scores dead and others hospitalized.
He said, “We have heard of some insecurity in the Masaka area and have taken note. Investigations are underway and once we have the full report, I will come back to the House and give you details.”
The Minister was responding to Dr. Abed Bwanika, the MP, Kimaanya Kabonera, who had raised concern during the plenary sitting that, the security situation in greater Masaka, is getting out of hand with the endless attacks leaving residents in fear and panic.
Bwanika told Parliament that on August 23, 2021, a total of four residents of the same village were murdered and others injured by unknown assailants that are still on the run.
“The other night, we lost four residents that were murdered in one village. On the night of August 22, three people were attacked in the same constituency and one of them succumbed to injuries,” said Bwanika.
“An old man of 90 years identified as Edrisa Kakooza was murdered by people who we do not know up to now,” he added.
Bwanika wondered whether the murders and the increasing insecurity in greater Masaka specifically in Lwengo, Bukomansimbi and Bukoto Central could be attributed to the small number of Police personnel and police posts in the sub-region.
Varying media accounts have reported that in the last two weeks, at least fifteen people have been hacked to death in the greater Masaka area, by unknown machete wielding assailants currently on the run.
This is not the first time, the area is witnessing a similar insecurity situation but about three years ago the gang was busted and the criminality thwarted.
The killings started in 2016 and during that period, over 30 people lost their lives, which prompted the then Inspector General of Police, Gen. Kale Kayihura, to camp in the area.
Kayihura’s command of a joint operation by Police and sister security agencies then, resulted in the arrest of Muhammad Kiddawalime and Musa Galiwango, who were said to be the ring leaders of the killing gang.
Unlike in previous incidents where the gang would issue notices of intent to kill, the new criminals simply break into various homes and hack occupants to death before vanishing without taking any possessions.
Besides Masaka, the country has also witnessed organized crime in other areas like Entebbe in Wakiso district where, several women were killed by stuffing their private parts with cassava stems after raping them.
The killing of women pattern revealed that some of the victims were mobile money operators but in all cases, their money and phones were never touched.
House Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah, appealed to the Minister to fast track the investigation to build confidence in the people of Masaka.