Kampala, (UG): The Territorial Police in Kampala are actively investigating a case of aggravated robbery after cash amounting to three billion shillings was stolen from the home of Hajj Mafabi Sulaiman Lumolo and his wife Hon Amb Nekesa Barbara Oundo, the National Treasurer of the ruling NRM party.
The mega heist which has seen twelve suspects including four police officers implicated is said to have happened last month on 5th December 2023 at around 04 am at the Oundo’s residence at Kyeitabya zone, Bukasa parish, Makindye Division, a Kampala suburb.
Facts gathered indicate that Oundo, together with his husband had the money kept in dollars and shillings in their house, the prime suspect identified as PC Wango Michael, having stayed at the residence as a home guard, for more than one and half years came to know about.
“As a result, he [Wango] hatched a plan with two other police officers, including; Sgt Idro Dominic, PC Mugoya Sharif, together with Arinda Edgar alias Watson and Niwagaba Rogers and on 5th December 2023, the mission was executed by PC Wango Michael, PC Mugoya Sharif, Arinda Edgar alias Watson and Palaso who replaced Miiwagaba Rogers,” SCP Fred Enanga, the Police Spokesperson told journalists yesterday [Monday] at the weekly security briefing in Kampala.
He added; “To help avoid detection, the mastermind PC Wango, disabled the Alarm system, which was controlled and monitored by the guards, at the main gate security sentry room. He also disconnected the electric wires, mounted on top of the perimeter wall, as well as the security lights around the area, he had earmarked for entry.”
Enanga explained that the prime suspect further adjusted the CCTV cameras, to avoid capturing footage from the direction his accomplices would use.
On the day when the heist was executed, Wango and his accomplices, PC Mugoya Sharif together with Arinda Edgar alias Watson and Palaso (who replaced Niwagabaa) gained entry into the compound at around 10 pm and laid in wait till 4 am.
“They inflicted controlled injuries on PC Wango Michael’s head, picked the two rifles in his possession, and thereafter proceeded to the servants’ quarters, where they forced the 3 maids, to open the main house. After gaining entry, into the main house, the suspects broke the 4 doors inside the house,” explained the police spokesperson.
To effect their mission to the fullest, the suspects traced and located Hon. Amb. Nekesa from her hiding place and threatened to harm her, and she led them to the bedroom where they kept their money while her husband was not at home.
“The suspects accessed the money in Ugandan Shillings and carried their loot in 5 bags, full of cash. They escaped through the small gate with 5 bags of cash, an iPhone 12 Promax, a golden ring, a DVR for the CCTV system, a Techno Spark 9 smartphone, and a Huawei 19 mobile phone.”
They [suspects] also disappeared with the two police guns, and 60 rounds of ammunition, which PC Mugoya Sharif, abandoned in a potato garden, 200 metres away from the residence and proceeded to hide in a banana plantation, where their rider identified as Kalinda Josh found them.
“They had in their possession 3 bags, after two other bags were hurriedly dropped, in the banana plantation by Arinda Edgar and Palaso, when they saw a local security guard advancing towards them, with a torch. PC Mugoya Sharif and Arinda Edgar alias Watson, boarded one motorcycle, to Nsambya barracks with two bags of cash, as Palaso boarded another motorcycle and disappeared from his accomplices with a bag containing an unspecified amount of money,” Enanga explained.
Police said Ms Oundo, the victim of the mega heist opened up a case but reported a robbery of cash Ugx 41 million that was hers. However, an additional complaint was made by her husband Hajji Mafabi Sulaiman Lumolo, of Ugx 2.2 bn, that was robbed from his safe.
In total, police say the total amount stolen from the home was Ugx 2.241.000.000/= (Two billion two hundred forty-one billion).
How the heist was divided
While at the barracks, PC Mugoya distributed in two bags as follows:-
i. Ugx 220 million was kept for PC Wango Michael (out of which 20m, was reserved to secure his bail) in case he is charged to court. The amount was handed over to his uncle Basooma Emmanuel who travelled from Budongo village in Namutumba District to Nsambya Barracks to collect it.
ii. Arinda Edgar Watson was given Ugx 200m.
iii. The bodaboda rider was given Ugx 20m
iv. Sgt Idro Dominic, who did not participate was given Ugx 8.8m
v. PC Mugoya Sharif kept for himself Ugx 230m
Further investigations revealed that on 10th December 2023, five days after the robbery, one Opio Samuel Obote, a 60-year-old, casual labourer, while grazing goats of his boss, Matiya Rulangwa, at Kyeyitabya village, picked an unspecified amount of money together with an empty bag and a CT police uniform.
“He kept it in a container and started spending it lavishly. His boss Matiya Rulangwa, and one Masembe also picked some of the money. The balance was handed over to Apunyo Patrick, by Opio Samuel, and they escaped and hid in Lugazi,” stated Enanga.
According to the police spokesperson, the twelve (12) suspects arrested were charged with PC Wango Michael, Arimda Edga alias Watson, PC Mugoya Sharif, Basooma Emmanuel, Niwagaba Rogers, Opio Samuel Obote and Matiya Rulangwa all facing four counts of aggravated robbery.
Additionally, Ssempanga Joseph alias Mulwma, Nyiro Moses and Apunyo Patrick were charged with receiving and retaining suspected stolen property and Sgt Idro Dominic was charged with being an accessory, after the fact.
“All 112 suspects appeared before the Chief Magistrates Court, Makindye and remanded until the 25th of January 2024, for further mention of the case. The mission was hatched two weeks before the robbery,” Enanga stated, adding that efforts are now in place to locate one Palaso and other accomplices, who are still at large, trace for asses bought with proceeds from the crime.
With the case still a matter of court appearance, a sideline investigation of the heist has unearthed a plot by Ms Oundo for allegedly staging the heist to divert the attention of the NRM Secretariat which has with the approval of President Museveni initiated investigations on her for an alleged misappropriation of party funds.
This website understands that the alleged fund misuse has been circulating since last year, with the party experiencing a quarterly loss of Shs1.3 billion, leading to delays in project implementation and salary payments.
Nonetheless, police said the successful arrest and charging of the suspects reiterates the force’s commitment to rooting out corruption and misconduct at all levels as one of its top criminal priorities.
“The top leadership also continues to thank the majority of officers who pride themselves on high standards of integrity, discipline and professionalism to keep our citizens and country safe.”
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