Security has made a breakthrough in the investigations into the assassination attempt on Works and Transport Minister after arresting four suspects whereas two have been taken out of action.
Gen Katumba’s military vehicle moving without an escort car was on June,1, 2021 sprayed with bullets along the Kisota –Kulambiro Road, Nakawa Division in Kampala District killing his driver and daughter instantly whereas the four-general sustained injuries.
On Thursday, the deputy Inspector General of Police, Maj Gen Paul Lokech announced the arrest of three suspects whereas one had been put out of action as he allegedly tried to grab a gun from one of the security operatives.
Lokech named the suspects as Muhammad Kagugube alias Bafumoya, Kamada Walusimbi, alias Mudinka, Hussein Wahab Lubwama alias Master, Siriman Kisambira, alias Mukwasi and Mustafa Kawawa Ramadan, alias Amin.
A day later on Friday, Police announced yet another breakthrough that led to the arrest of two more suspects including Juma Sserwadda and Juma Saidi.
Roles played by the suspects
Addressing journalists, the deputy police chief in detail, explained how security surveyed, tracked and arrested the six suspects who were found in different locations in the greater Kampala Metropolitan districts of Kampala and Wakiso.
According to Lokech, the arrest of Muhammad Kagugube saw operatives interrogate him and he later gave in his colleagues.
“Upon interrogation, Kagugube admitted to having participated in the violent attack, when he carried out surveillance on the movement of Gen Katumba Wamala from his home. He immediately alerted the assault team, as soon as he spotted him and the direction he was taking. After alerting the assault team, he went up to Bukoto near Oryx Petrol Station, where he waited for the two guns, but received only one and rode away with it,”Lokech said.
He updated the shooters about the movement of Gen Katumba’s vehicle and on seeing it, her alerted them.
Kamada Walusimbi, alias Mudinka
According to security, Kamada Walusimbi, aka Mudinka rode the bike on which one of the shooters sat during the operation.
He is suspected to have ridden Kanaabe, the man suspected to have shot the left hand side of the vehicle injuring Gen Katumba.
After the shooting, Walusimbi rode to Bukoto near Oryx Petrol Station and handed over the gun to Kagugube.
Kanaabe who is currently on the run is suspected to have been one of the shooters who took to the left side of Gen Katumba’s car where the four-star general sat on the fateful day.
Security is still trying to break the puzzle behind Kanaabe’s real names.
Hussein Wahab Lubwama aka Master
Lubwama is suspected to have been the second shooter who shot on the right hand side of the vehicle ending the life of Gen Katumba’s daughter and that of his driver.
He led the mission on June,1, 2021 but also suspected to have provided all the logistics used in the mission including guns, motorcycles, mobile phones and facilitation.
Master is also suspected to have been the team leader and head of the who was put out action when he grabbed a gun from one of the security operatives during the operation.
Siriman Kisambira, aka Mukwasi
He received one of the killer guns from Master which he later handed over to another member of the group called Mustafa Kawawa Ramadan alias Amin.
One of the bikes used in the shooting, registration number UEJ 283L was kept at his place in Kawanda, Wakiso district and was recovered by security.
Mustafa Kawawa Ramadan aka Amin
Arrested from his home in Maganjo “B” LC1, Seruwumba Sub-zone, Maganjo Parish, Nabweru Division several items including materials used in making improvised explosive devices, Al Quaeda training manuals, secret communication codes, and Western Union money transfer receipts were recovered from his home.
He was however put out of action on Friday morning as he tried to escape during a search at one of the suspects’ home in Namuwongo.
Sheikh Abudin Hibaida Taheel Bukenya
Suspected to be an ex ADF combatant who was earlier given amnesty by government, security says Bukenya is the reactivating the domestic ADF cell in Uganda and was the brain behind the recruitment of Muhammad Kagugube alias Bafumoya and Lubwama Hussein alias Kinene Christopher alias Master.
He is however currently on the run but operations to apprehend him are ongoing.
A chapat seller and resident of Namuwongo, Sserwadda led operatives to the home of Juma Saidi, a boda boda rider who stays in Namuwongo-Kanyogoga village, Bukasa parish .
The boda rider and resident of Nawongo was the custodian of the weapons used by the gang in the missions.
Upon arrest and subsequent interrogation, Saidi led the team to his poultry house where he removed from underneath the ground, two SMG rifles and a pistol wrapped in a polythene bag .
The recovered guns had been transferred from Kisasi to Nansana, Kawanda and then Namuwongo-Kanyogoga after the June,1 attack on Gen Katumba Wamala.
Security recovered two SMG rifles and a pistol, where the rifles are suspected to have been the killer guns in the June,1, 2021 shooting whereas the pistol is suspected to have been used in other shootings.
The SMGs are also suspected to have been used in the earlier murders of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi.
What security says
The Deputy Inspector General of Police said on subjecting the guns to forensic analysis by ballistic experts, it was discovered they had been used in earlier murders of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi and Maj Muhammad Kiggundu.
He however hailed the different security agencies for the breakthrough in investigations.
When asked what could have been done differently in the investigations into Gen Katumba attack unlike the earlier shootings of prominent persons., Lokech was quick to point to the existence of CCTV cameras that helped identify the suspects.
“By then( earlier shootings), government had not yet installed systems like cameras like we have today. They(cctv) cameras are a force multiplier. When we integrate these cameras with other systems, getting criminals will get much more easier ,”Gen Lokech said.
“Criminality gets sophisticated day and night but when systems are fully integrated with technical intelligence, surveillance and human intelligence, we can win.”
He noted that security has started operations to break the ADF cell in Uganda and that these will continue.