Soldiers, civilians injured in attack on UPDF engineers renovating Namboole stadium

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Scores including UPDF soldiers were on Thursday injured after a group of people allegedly attacked army engineers renovating Mandela National Stadium, Namboole.

According to the deputy defence spokesperson, Col Deo Akiiki, a group of individuals led by Godfrey Kawooya, the area vice chairman and another individual identified as  “Masada” of Katooke Zone led a group of encroachers on government land and attacked UPDF Engineers on duty with machetes, stones, arrows and bows.

He said the UPDF engineers were carrying out surveys on the land the land that hosts Namboole stadium Complex in order to begin laying culverts and block manholes.

“The security detail protecting the site and workers, shot three warning shots to disperse Kawooya’s gang but in vain. Chaos ensued and three of our soldiers were injured including Private Masereka Jackson, whose fingers were cut by panga welding gangs,” Col Akiiki said in a statement.

A separate statement by the Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson, Patrick Onyango indicated that during the scuffle, two civilians who were both boda boda riders were injured by “stray bullets”.

He identified the victims as Moses Wambi ,20 and Warren Nuwamanya, 43 who are all receiving treatment.

 

According to the UPDF deputy spokesperson, the development came after notices to vacate the premises being renovated by the army engineers were sent out to encroachers on the government land and that the deadline had passed.

 

“Notices of vacating the premises were sent out to encroachers several times by all concerned authorities and a deadline of February, 15  2023 was given. Indeed, upon expiry of these notices a company called Flight Auctioneers was hired to forcefully evict the defiant encroachers,” Col Akiiki said.

He however noted that the UPDF engineers will continue with their work of renovating the stadium, noting that they “will not be deterred despite acts of provocation by errant and illegal encroachers on the property.”

“We have beefed up security at the stadium and call upon citizens to respect public property in order to avoid unnecessary injuries and loss of lives.”

As part of the ongoing renovation works, the UPDF engineers also embarked on a process of construction of a perimeter wall around the land housing Namboole stadium as one of the ways to protect it against encroachers.

However, there have been cases of stiff resistance from encroachers and the Thursday morning incident is one of those.

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