An Insight into the CCTV Camera Project and the Mysterious Crimes
Since his ascension to power about three decades back in the year, 1986 President Museveni has been reciting the same old song titled security and peace at every state of the nation address of every thee year. The president could be partially right at some point because he and his bush war colleagues enjoy beefed security as they travel in the midst of convoys and heavily armed UPDF patrols that can ably detect an encroaching fly and deal with it.
In reality, Uganda’s security has suffered a multiplicity of setbacks right from the early 1990’s when warlord Joseph Kony formed a militia group dubbed the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) which comprised platoons of orphaned child soldiers that mercilessly butchered civilians in Northern Uganda. Similarly, another jihadist rebel group named the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) led by Jamil Mukulu was also busy engineering mass killings in the Rwenzori region.
The insecurity trend crossed into the first decade of the 21st century with killings featuring at micro level dominating the urban areas like Kampala which suffered hand thrown grenades that killed revellers in Nakulabye bars. At the macro scene, killings ensued in rural remote hard to reach areas adjacent to the Democratic Republic of Congo which harboured lots of rebel group that would freely cross into Uganda and leave villages blazing in flames.
Years later at the spin of the first decade in 2010, Al-shabab terrorists beat Uganda’s un-sober security to sneak in deadly weapons via the Kenyan boarder. An unprecedented horrid incident struck Kampala in July 2010 when over 80 football fans succumbed to the coordinated bombings that were triggered at the Ethiopian village and Kyadondo rugby grounds where football addicts were watching the Spain-Netherlands final. A few years later after the terror attack, a trend of assassinations hit Kampala with prominent Muslim clerics being targeted by unknown gunmen who would trail on them with aid of motorcycles and then shoot them either near their residential areas or on busy streets.
The most targeted were of the Tabliq sect which largely comprised of learned Muslim clerics that had returned from Saudi Arabia where they had been dispatched to for Koranic studies by the then Muslim president, Iddi Amin Dada who ruled Uganda between 1971-1979. By the year, 2015 about 12 prominent Muslim clerics had been assassinated in cold blood with the last being Sheikh Hassan Kirya in 2015 almost a year after Mustapha Bahiga who had been killed in the December of the preceding year.
In 2015, Al-Jazeera exposed the existence of government run death squads in Kenya where Muslims were potential state targets. One would wonder if it was the same trend in neighbouring Uganda. The then Ugandan Inspector General of Police, Gen. Edward Kale Kayihura cited ADF assassins as the main engineers of these assassinations but still this police report remained questionable before the public as questions lingered about how a Muslim Jihadist army would target its very own. The jigsaw puzzle patterned all the deceased clerics to have once had links to the ADF but had deserted to start a normal life under a government run resettlement program.
In April 2015, lead state prosecutor, in the ‘July-2010’ bomb trial, Justice Joan Kagezi was similarly gunned down by Boda Boda trailing assailants. Two years later, Assistant Inspector General of Police, Andrew Felix Kaweesi was shot dead in cold blood by masked assailants who had studied his daily routine schedule. The shootout ensued just outside his Kulambiro residence in the outskirts of the capital, Kampala. . In the State of Nation address of that year, 2018 the government launched a multi-million dollar CCTV camera project in the capital, Kampala.
The installation coverage hit all the five divisions, namely: Nakawa, Kawempe, Rubaga, Central, and Makindye which make up Kampala.The government was convinced that the camera project would end the sinister and mysterious murders of its citizens and high profile people. However, the restless trigger hungry assassins went ahead to gun down a police defect, Asp. Muhammad Kirumira just to show that the CCTV cameras could not silence their guns. Even this very year in Lungujja a residential place to government officials like the Prime Minister, Ruhakana Rugunda, Vice President, Edward Ssekandi and Lord Mayor, Elias Lukwago, a young student was shot dead in April, 2019 and the assassins freely drove off without traces. An alleged assassination attempt on the Kayunga Woman MP, Hon. Aidah Nantaba was also reported along the Kayunga-Kampala highway.
The latest urban crime involved a mass shooting in Nansana where robbers attacked a hardware store in May, 2019 and killed three people to flee off with millions of shillings. This shamelessly shooting ensued in broad daylight at a time when the NRM government had just birthed a security unit, LDU to combat such incidents. The murders remain ongoing with the criminals not showing any sign of retirement. Our analysis has not tackled the Women killings and child kidnappings that also remain a serious threat. We pose the question for you to answer if the multi-million dollar CCTV camera project has helped in any way.