The United States of America has issued a travel advisory to its citizens against Uganda citing increased crime rates and insecurity.
The advisory is contained in a statement from the bureau of consular affairs. Among other things, the advisory cautions all citizens traveling to Uganda to have a contingency plan for emergencies, and keeping a low profile.
US citizens are also cautioned to move in groups, avoid resisting robbery attempts, and “Food and drinks should never be left attended to in public especially in local clubs.”
“Violent crime, such as armed robbery, home invasion, and sexual assault, is common especially in larger cities including Kampala and Entebbe. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crime,” the advisory reads.
Key to note however, is that the advisory is an update of one that was issued by the same department a month ago.
This comes at the heels of the kidnap and eventual murder of Susan Magara, an accountant. Magara was kidnaped and held for 20 days before being murdered much to the shock of the public.
During a requiem mass at Mbuya catholic church on Wednesday, relatives and friends expressed dissatisfaction with the way security agencies specifically police, handled the matter.
Magara’s grandfather Lenny Muganwa said he was disappointed with police’s failure to rescue her grand daughter after 20 whole days, while the deceased’s sister, Cindy Magara rapped government for the country’s unresolved murders.
Magara’s murder was only an addition to a series of murders whose perpetrators have not been apprehended nor solutions granted by government.
During Magara’s burial on Thursday, Security Minister Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde apologised to the public and mourners saying that the security agencies in the country are guilty of failing to save the deceased.
He said that “We did not come from the bush as experts but are learning on job”, adding that the kidnappers were so sophisticated for their handling.
String of crimes
Just a day after Magara’s murder, armed men trailed and slit the throat of Joselyn Agaba, a businesswoman in Bweyogerere with a panga and making off with her Shs 180,000 and $100 before police intercepted and shot them.
A day later, unidentified man was murdered in the wee hours of Friday and his body dumped by the roadside in Lubya, Kasubi, a Kampala suburb.
On February 23, a Congolese national Nganga Bibiche Bola went missing after she was allegedly kidnapped by men in military fatigue. She however resurfaced five days later.
Around the same time, a one Philip Wabwire Tumwebaze vanished days to his wedding date.
Earlier in the month, New vision journalist Charles Etukuri went missing after he was kidnapped by unidentified people who claimed they were unhappy with a series of stories he had written with the government owned newspaper.
Etukuri’s kidnap followed that of Rev Bakka, another journalist who had gone missing since last year. Meanwhile, last year alone, a total of 25 women were gruesomely kidnapped and murdered in similar fashion in Wakiso district under two months.