The State minister for Internal Affairs, Obiga Kania has revealed police is investigating a new list in which unknown assailants have threatened to kill a number of people all over the country.
A list with 16 people including government officials, cultural and traditional leaders and politicians was early this week released sending panic among the people listed for assassination.
Among the people listed included Kyadondo East legislator and singer Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine , Buganda premier Charles Peter Mayiga and Government Chief Whip Ruth Nankabirwa , Moses Kasibante(Rubaga North MP).
Others on the list include Ntungamo Municipality MP, Gerard Karuhanga, Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago, Kawempe South MP Mubarak Munyagwa and Kampala Minister Beti Kamya. Titular head of Muslims, Kassim Nakibinge, former Kampala Metropolitan South Commander Siraje Bakaleke and deputy Police Spokesperson, Patrick Onyango.
Obiga told journalists that security is not taking the matter lightly, adding that investigations into the new list have begun in a bid to find out the people behind the list.
“We have got copies of those documents have already submitted them to police for investigations to begin,” the junior Internal Affairs Minister said on Thursday.
Police spokesperson Emilian Kayima confirmed beginning of investigations into the death list.
“We are pursuing all lines as part of our investigations to find out who the authors are and those involved in the circulation,”Kayima said.
A number of high profile people including Maj.Muhammad Kiggundu, prosecutor Joan Kagezi,AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi, Muslim clerics, MP Col.Ibrahim Abiriga and recently ASP Muhammad Kirumira have in the past been attacked and shot dead by unknown assailants travelling on motorcycles.
Police recently said they had received intelligence reports indicating imminent attacks on VIPs in various parts of the country before, during and immediately after independence celebrations that were held on October 9.
“The police have intelligence that some criminal elements within and outside the country may want to commit heinous crimes against members of the public especially VIPs like Hon. Ministers, MPs, senior executives and security personnel during or after October 9 when Uganda celebrates her independence, ”police spokesperson Emilian Kayima said in a statement early this month.
A number of people who have been included on the new hit list have in the past complained over receiving death threats from unknown people on their lives.
Kampala Minister, Beti Olive Namisango Kamya recently revealed she is fearing for her life after receiving death threats from unknown persons.
“I saw the list on which I am among the people to be killed and I am bothered by the leaflet since there are many murders in Kampala now days,”Kamya said before adding that she has taken the necessary precautionary measures to avoid being victim.
“I no longer put myself in unnecessary risks. As a Christian, I pray to God for protection and I also don’t move at night. I return home early on top of the security I have.”
On September 20, MP Gerald Karuhanga revealed he had received threatening messages informing him that he would die after a Makerere University Don, Dr Kizza Musaazi.
“Musasizi afude, gwe adako (Musaazi is dead, you are next),” read one of the messages to the legislator.
Former Kampala South Metropolitan Police Commander Siraje Bakaleke last month said he was fearing for his life after receiving messages threatening his life.
“Since I started challenging my case at the Anti-Corruption court, I started receiving threatening messages on my phone and these messages through WhatsApp and SMS have persisted after the death of Kirumira,” Bakaleke said.
“Ugandans pray for me, Christians pray for me, Moslems pray for me, Men and Women please pray for me, my life is not safe,” he lamented on TV.
However, the police spokesperson says the commanders in areas where the people allegedly targeted by assassins through the new hit list have been tasked to speak to them for more information about the attacks.
“They should be able to share with us more information about their security and safety,” he said.
Expert weighs in
However, according to Fred Egesa, a former police officer and currently a private investigate expert, the new list might be another tactic by yet to be known assailants to cause panic and diversion among security agencies before striking.
“You might find that someone is targeting two or three people but wants to overload security by creating a very big list,”Egesa says.
He however insists the police should work closely with the public to help get information in case of any suspicious individuals.