Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni has visited the scene where a legislator was gunned down on Friday night, and prescribed several solutions for the persistent security problems that have dogged the country.
Ibrahim Abiriga, the legislator for Arua Municipality in Northern Uganda was shot dead last night a few metres from his home in Kawanda, on the outskirts of the capital Kampala.
Abiriga was a controversial legislator, known for always yellow attire from a cap on the head to the shoes on his feet. He was also one of the most vocal supporters of the age limit amendments that were the source of heated debate and physical fights in parliament last year.
I have also observed creeping indiscipline on radios. People threaten violence on air and just get away with it. The Minister of Information must deal with this.
Abiriga was killed in a manner that has been used to kill other prominent state officials including the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Andrew Felix Kaweesi, the state prosecutor, Joan Kagezi, the UPDF’s Major Kiggundu and several Muslim clerics over the past three years.
Abriga’s death could have been prevented
On inspection of the crime, the president pointed several loopholes that criminals had taken advantage of to kill Abiriga, whom he described as ‘a dedicated supporter and patriotic Ugandan’.
The president said vigilance could have prevented the ‘senseless killing’ of the legislator, since the criminals were riding a numberless motorcycle, and had their heads covered with helmets even when they were standing in one place.
‘‘These were signs that should have led to suspicion. Had the locals rang the police, this crime could have been prevented. Therefore, please, report everything that is suspicious and do so promptly,’‘ the president said.
These were signs that should have led to suspicion. Had the locals rang the police, this crime could have been prevented. Therefore, please, report everything that is suspicious and do so promptly.— Yoweri K Museveni (@KagutaMuseveni) 8 juin 2018
He then reiterated the need for CCTV cameras, which he said will be installed in ‘a few months’, that will make the work of identifying criminals faster. The president has in the past called for the installation of such cameras and capturing of Ugandans’ DNA and palm prints to aid in the fight against crime.
‘Act on those who threaten violence on radio’
He then gave directives to several agencies of government, to facilitate the restoration of calm and security in a populace that is living in fear.
- The police should inform the public about the progress made in investigations.
- Local defence forces should be set up to monitor villages and work with the police to apprehend criminals.
- The minister of information must crack the whip on people who threaten violence on local radios and other media platforms.
‘‘I have also observed creeping indiscipline on radios. People threaten violence on air and just get away with it. The Minister of Information must deal with this.’‘
During the state of the nation address delivered on Thursday, the president blamed the assassination of state officials on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) rebel group which he said is supported by the United Nations and Congolese government.