WESTERN UGANDA: A police crime report in Southwestern Uganda has revealed that at least 138 people were killed within a space of three months in the Ankole and Kigezi sub-regions. The two subregions consist of 16 districts sub-divided into three policing regions of Kigezi, Rwizi and Greater Bushenyi.
According to Samson Kasasira, the police spokesperson for Rwizi region which covers the districts of Mbarara, Kazo, Rwampara, Ibanda, Kiruhura, Isingiro, Ntungamo and Mbarara City, 74 murder cases were recorded in the months of January, February and March. Of these, 28 were cases of murder through assault and 14 by mob action.
“From January to March, we recorded two cases of murder by shooting, two by poisoning, four by stabbing, one by arson and four by aggravated defilement. We also recorded five cases by strangulation, seven by hacking, seven by a blunt object, 14 by mob action and 28 through assault,” he said.
The Rwizi regional police report indicated that Ntungamo District led with the highest number of murders with 19 cases, followed by Mbarara City with 12, Ibanda (11), Isingiro (10), Mbarara District (7), Kazo (4) and Kiruhura (4).
The Greater Bushenyi policing region, which covers the districts of Rubirizi, Mitooma, Buhweju, Sheema and Bushenyi, recorded 22 cases of murder in the months of February, March and April.
“The cases have drastically reduced compared to past years. This is partly because we have intensified our operations, we have done better in terms of community policing and our relationship with the community has greatly improved,” Mr Marcial Tumusiime, the Greater Bushenyi regional police spokesperson, said.
Mr Tumusiime said Bushenyi had the highest number of murder cases in the region, with nine cases recorded, followed by Sheema with seven cases, Buhweju, Rubirizi and Mitooma with two cases each.
The Kigezi police region, which covers the districts of Rubanda, Rukiiga, Kabale, Kisoro, Rukungiri and Kanungu, had 38 cases of murder between February 13 and May 13.
The Kigezi region police spokesperson, Mr Elly Maate, attributed the increase in murder cases in the region to land wrangles, domestic violence and mob action, adding that they have now prioritised community policing as a way of sensitising the masses against criminal acts.
“We are using radio programmes and community meetings to sensitise the community members against committing crime and the consequences involved if one is proven guilty. It has always been our advice to the community members to avoid taking the law into their hands but always report their grievances to the relevant authorities for proper conflict resolution,” Maate said.
Additional reporting by Monitor
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