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Police deploy aircraft in Entebbe to fight crime Police deploy aircraft in Entebbe to fight crime Police deploy aircraft in Entebbe to fight crime

Police deploy aircraft in Entebbe to fight crime

Residents of Katabi Town Council on the Kampala-Entebbe highway were treated to a rare spectacle of a police aircraft as it hovered in the skies and beamed spot lights on different locations.

The use of the aircraft comes at a time of worsening insecurity in the area as a result of mysterious killings.

Flying low, the aircraft flew for about an hour with the biggest focus on Abayita Ababiri township.

 Many residents were awed and seen gazing at the aircraft as it roared from one part of the town council to another.

 Recently, bodies of women have been dumped in various areas of the town council.

The body of the latest victim, Jalia Nalule, was on Tuesday found in a bush in Nkumba, bringing the number of victims who have been brutally murdered in the last one month, to 11.

Most of the women have been raped before being strangled or bludgeoned.

The crime has forced Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura and Security Minister Henry Tumukunde, to camp in the area.

The deployement of the aircraft is a new development in the fight against the mysterious murderers.

 Police Spokesperson, Mr Asan Kasingye, however, denied knowledge of the use of the aircraft in combating crime in Katabi.

 Kasingye says the police are using what he terms as "intelligence-led investigations" to deal with the murders and other crimes in the area.

Asked if the police are being boosted by the military, Mr Kasingye says they have not asked the army for support, adding that he isn't aware of any military involvement.

According to Mr Kasingye, in addition to the use of intelligence, the police have enhanced foot and motorised patrols.

Of late, soldiers have been seen on patrol especially along the highway and Kasenyi Road.


By Agencies

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  • NGO 'abandons' former street children in Kamwokya

    More than 20 children, who were picked off the streets in Kampala and enrolled in a school in Kamwokya, are facing a grim future after their sponsor reportedly abandoned them.

    The pupils were sponsored by Street Child Care Uganda (SCCU), an NGO who's mission is "to bring vulnerable and street children off the streets through sports, and cultural activities, and rehabilitate them back into society and their homes through education, learning, and love."
    21 of the former street children are now enrolled at KCCA primary school-Kamwokya. However, the NGO has not cleared school fees for the children since 2005.

    The school has now indicated that it's ending the relationship with the organisation with immediate effect, a decision which has left the youngsters' education future hanging in balance. The school claims the NGO owes them close to Shs 7 million.

    "Every term, we send reminders that are answered in the same fashion that the person meant to sign is out of the country. But doesn't this person ever come back? I think we have been dealing with conmen and have decided to put an end to our association with them," Jane Kansiime, the head teacher KCCA primary school Kamwokya says.
    Adding; "After knowing that they are conmen, their children are out class. We have sent them away. Now, for them they have been used to telling us lies but now it is over. It is over. They just keep writing our director is out of the country."

    The school has now denied the pupils access to the end of term examinations until payments are cleared. Among the affected children are four pupils in primary seven who will not be sitting for mock examinations and Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) if the dues are not cleared.

    Exams at the school begun last week and are expected to end this Thursday.

    Kampala Central Division town clerk Theophius Tibihika told URN that they got a letter from the school informing them of the situation and are carrying out investigations on the matter.

    Ivan Muyanja, the education officer at Street Child Care Uganda told URN that he was not aware that the children were out of school and missing exams at the moment.

    "I am away and I did not know that the children were chased but I will be back in town on Monday and talk to the head teacher so that the children can be taken back to school."

  • Religious leaders speak out on presidential age limit

    Having been criticized by some Ugandans for their loud silence on current social and political developments in the country, religious leaders have finally weighed in on the debate on plans to limit the presidential age limit.

    While some are for total rejection, others in support, some clergy have played safe by refusing to comment altogether on plans to amend article 102(b) of the Constitution to lift the presidential age limit currently capped at 75 years.

    The article seals the age of the president at between 35 and 75 years beyond which an individual cannot stand for the highest office.
    Parliament is currently considering an amendment to the constitution on land issues, after the tabling, a month ago.

    However, the discussion of the new bill is as divisive as the debate on the age of the president, an issue yet to be formally brought to parliament.
    But the tone within the ruling party, National Resistance Movement shows that many are in favour of lifting the age limit to allow President Yoweri Museveni extend his rule beyond 2021 when he will be 77 years.
    And now religious leaders have weighed in on the issue with many saying amending Article 102(b) could turn Uganda into a dictatorship while others argue that the matter should be decided through a referendum.
    Among those opposed to amending the Constitution include Bishop Reuben Kisembo of Ruwenzori Diocese, a Church of Uganda episcopal territory that covers the districts of Kabarole, Bundibugyo, Ntoroko, Kyenjojo and Kyegegwa.
    Bishop Kisembo says that if the Constitution is amended, the Members of Parliament will have done a disservice to the people of Uganda. Bishop Kisembo also says that the Uganda has able people who can lead the country and should be given an opportunity as well.
    "Why should a single leader rule this country for three decades? There are many people out there who can also be presidents. My prayer is that our beloved constitution should be respected," Kisembo said.
    On Sunday, shortly after attending the installation of Reverend Dr Alfred Olwa as third Bishop of Lango Diocese, Bishop Kisembo posted on his Facebook page a message with clear intentions.
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    Last week, while speaking at Fort Portal Diocese headquarters in Virika, the Bishop Fort Portal Catholic Diocese, Dr Robert Muhirwa, expressed the same views.
    Bishop Muhirwa warned legislators against amending the Constitution, noting that such a move would breed dictatorship in the country. Speaking in Runyoro-Rutooro, Muhirwa also reminded the MPs that they swore an oath to protect the Constitution, therefore it should be respected.
    The bishop warned that changing the Constitution could plunge the country into turmoil leading to death of innocent people.
    Sheikh Habibu Mande, the Rwenzori Region Khadi, however, sounded cagey when URN sought his comment. He said that there is nothing wrong with amending the Constitution as long as it benefits the country.

    On whether the presidential age limit should be lifted, Mande says that he will first seek permission from the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council before speaking to the media on the issue.
    Rt. Rev. Giuseppe Filippi of Kotido Diocese says the matter requires a referendum, arguing that every country has a right to determine how it should be governed including changing the Constitution.
    He however notes that there must be big support from the public.

    "Uganda needs a referendum on this matter to get a clear view of the people. However, in some countries like Brazil and Venezuela where minority selfish people tempered with the Constitution, people reacted in a bad way," Bishop Filippi noted.
    His counterpart from Moroto Catholic Diocese, Bishop Damiano Guzzetti, highlights what he calls a lot of efforts for transformation in the last 30 years.

    "I came to Uganda in August the same year President Museveni took over power. I have seen so many government initiatives targeting community transformation but somehow not successful due to poor implementation. I can have a brand new car and hire a driver but it depends on the skills of the driver to deliver me to my destiny," Bishop Damiano said.
    Both bishops, Filippi and Guzzetti are missionary priests from Italy.
    Some of the bishops say they need a higher authority to speak on the matter. Bishop Joseph Abura of the Anglican Diocese of Karamoja declined to speak openly saying the matter is delicate and requires consultation with the Province of Church of Uganda or the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda.

    He however underscored the achievements of ruling NRM government in the region as a key milestone to progress in the entire country.
    Bishop Abura revealed that the issue of the presidential age limit was brought in the agenda of the last House of Bishops meeting in July but was differed since it had not been brought to parliament.
    "We couldn't discuss it there because it is just being fronted by the media and activists. If government initiates the process through parliament we shall then talk about it. It's not good to speculate," Bishop Abura notes.
    Other religious leaders who say they need permission from a higher authority to speak include Kasana-Luweero Bishop Paul Ssemogerere. Known for being vocal on political issues, Bishop Ssemogerere this time asked for time to consult the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU).
    However, Bishop James Nasak of Northern Karamoja Diocese voiced his opposition to any moves to amend the constitution saying it sets a dangerous precedent for the country.
    The cleric notes that much as President Museveni could be a tolerant leader, rules must be observed by all parties for democracy to thrive. He adds that amending the constitution often is not solution for the country.

    "How are we going to test the different abilities and different skills of the young people coming up? [Lifting the age limit is] One way of limiting and blocking off some of the talents that God is bringing up in the country especially of young people", said Bishop Nasaka.

    "You serve for 20 years, 30 years, 40 years because there is no limit. Another regime will come with different in different times, with authority and also begin to suppress people but we’ll have to live with it because there is no term limit and there is no age limit.  I mean, we must limit ourselves that is why rules are there. Even in football, there are rules of the game so that there is control . I mean if the church is regulating its own leadership why not in politics?".
    Sheikh Auni Aramazan, the district Kadhi for Karamoja, however, says the presidential age limit should be removed. Citing Karamoja sub-region, the Kadhi notes that it's only through President Museveni that Karamoja is peaceful and accessible.

    "According to the religious views on the present age limit amendment is; it can be possible  if the country is peaceful and you have somebody who can maintain it. It can be amended beyond 75 years, it just like a driver when you are driving, how do you bring somebody who doesn’t know how to drive. It can cause accidents. For me there can be amendment what where after is peace", Sheikh Aramazan said.
    In Masaka region, Bishop John Baptist Kaggwa of Masaka Diocese told URN he cannot talk about the age limit debate saying he doesn't understand it.

    "Please, don't ask me about two things; age limit debate and the constitution amendment bill on land. I don't understand them. I need to first study them and clearly understand them," Bishop Kaggwa noted.
    Sheikh Shaibu Ndugga and Sheikh Bulhan Bagunduuse both Masaka district Kadhis loyal to Kibuli and Uganda Muslim Supreme Council respectively, declined to speak share their views about the ongoing debate.
    While Sheikh Ndugga explained that it is not yet time to talk about age limit, Sheikh Bagunduuse simply said he has nothing to say.

    Last week IRCU issued a statement on land issues but remained silent on the age limit debate. Joshua Kitakule, the IRCU secretary general, when reached last week on position of the council on age limit debate, he replied that they are yet to issue any statement because the matter is still in speculation.
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    President Museveni, who has been in power since January 1986, will be 75 in 2019. If the constitutional provision remains as it is, he will be ineligible to contest in 2021.

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    This comes after government failed to honour its December 2016 promise of making the houses available as a Christmas package. In 2012, 7,118 people were affected by government’s acquisition of 29.34 square kilometres of land for the construction of Uganda’s first oil refinery, which will process crude oil from the Albertine region.

    At least 93 people opted for resettlement, and of these, 46 were to receive housing while 47 would get land as compensation. The refinery-affected persons say that government promised to put in place all the facilities that were needed for resettlement.

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    They also want special arrangements to be moved to the new resettlement village, and not rely on themselves for transportation as this would be costly. Those who will not receive houses want government to establish an alternative where they will resettle as they construct their houses on the land government allocated to them.

    Francis Elongat, the lands officer in the ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, said the refinery-affected people should move as government works to put these facilities in place.

    However, the people believe if they move before their requests are met as promised in the resettlement plan, government will not put these facilities in place. Until these requirements are met, the persons say they will not move.

    “They have been telling us that they will work on all these things. We presented our issues to the minister of Energy and Mineral Development, the speaker of parliament, Uganda Human Rights Commission, the MPs of Bunyoro region and petitioned the president to intervene in the process of compensation of the affected people. But nothing has been done because now they are telling us to move before they complete.

    “Construction is not finished as some facilities are not on site, while other people are still in court. So, we will not move when government is still negotiating because we believe our issues will not be solved,” Richard Orebi, one of the refinery-affected persons, said.

    They say that with the selection of a new contractor to build the refinery and groundbreaking of the pipeline construction, government should consider the concerns of the people and resettle them properly. Experts believe the manner in which government manages this process will affect the next acquisition of land for the crude oil pipeline.

    “If government refuses to listen to our concerns, then they are making us suffer because it is not about what government wants but what we landowners want. This will show that oil is for a few people, and not all Ugandans. Our land has been taken for the refinery. So, we should be resettled. If everything fails, we will follow the law and go to court to ensure our rights are realised,” Orebi said.



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