Winnie Kiiza: army killing Kasese civilians in own homes

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Uganda People's Defence Force (UPDF) and Ugandan Police patrol around the Rwesororo village

Leaders from Kasese district have denied UPDF reports that former Rwenzururu kingdom royal guards have started re-grouping with the intention of carrying out insurgent activities in the Rwenzori region.

The leaders, who were led by the Leader of Opposition, Winnie Kiiza, have accused the UPDF of masterminding the attacks on civilians they suspect to be royal guards and members of a militia group called Kirumiramutima.

They have called on the army to engage with them in handling the disputes in the district.

“It was he army, UPDF that went and attacked a man in his own home,” Winnie Kiiza, the Leader of Opposition in Parliament, told NTV, referring to Kule Matayo Bighanzire who was shot dead by Private Wickliffe Amanya in Kasangali village, Bwesumbu Sub-county.

“When you shoot me from my own compound, do you call that regrouping?” Kiiza wondered.

She said it is government killing people in order to incite the population and justify themselves.

Atkins Katushabe, Bukonzo West MP, told NTV government cannot begin cooking up a war and turn around saying people are trying to overthrow government yet those people don’t exist.

Gardi Mbayahi, the acting Rwenzururu Prime Minister said when people in that area begin doubting the statements issued by security personnel has forwarded to government, it leaves more anger and fear in the population.

Rey Bigogo, the LCV Chairperson Kasese district, told the television that security agencies are operating without even notifying area leaders.

Following the injuring of an army officer who was allegedly stabbed by a man suspected to be among the Kirumira Muthima group, security has been beefed up in Kasese and the entire Rwenzori region.

The army says the deployment is as a result of the militia group that is said to be re-grouping in the region especially in Busongora north and parts of the neighbouring Bunyangabu District.

The group is said to have been involved in clashes with government forces and killing of civilians in the recent past.

A number of army officers have been seen at Kasese officers mess. Police troop carriers have been seen coming in and out the of the central police offices.

The second division army spokesperson, Maj Peter Mugisa, told Daily Monitor, the heavy deployment in areas of Bwesumbu Sub-county in Kasese and Kabonero Sub-county in Bunyangabu District where the group is said to have bases.

Mugisa said that the operation by security operatives in which Matayo was killed, was part of the trailing of the remnants of Kirumira Muthima group who he said have been crossing river Mubuku in Kasese at night to Kabonero Sub-county in Bunyangabu district for training.

AIP Simon Apiire and PC Saverio Ochama were among the 19 police officers brutally killed by suspected Rwenzururu kingdom royal guards last year.

Maj Mugisa said that the whole Rwenzori sub region is under surveillance from Bundibugyo to Kasese.

Rwenzori East Regional Police Commander, Richard Ecega, told Monitor that police is now ready more than ever to deal with the enemy.

In Entebbe, police are on the hunt for two soldiers suspected to have beaten to death a man accused of stealing cement from a construction site in Mutungo, Kajjansi.

Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson, Emilian Kayima, told the state-run New Vision the two soldiers (Rogers Kasigazi and Shaban Musinguzi) were guarding the construction site in Mutungo from where they nabbed Rogers Waiswa allegedly stealing a bag of cement.

The two UPDF soldiers, both privates, reportedly assaulted Waiswa before taking him to Mutungo police post, but police officers there advised them to take him to hospital first because he was in a bad state on August 15, 2017.

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