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    Keep Purses In Between Your Feet Or Chest – Police Warns On Surging Rape And Robbery Cases In Taxis…

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    Fred Enanga displaying one of the fake number plates used by criminals

    Police has warned the public, especially women, on surging cases of rape and robbery in taxis and advised them to keep their money purses between their feet and chest.

    The warning was sounded by Police Spokesperson, Fred Enanga who disclosed that they have received complaints where criminals conspire with rogue taxi drivers and conductors to rob innocent passengers who board taxis of their valuables like cash, mobile phones, jewelry and ATM cards.

    Enanga revealed that the taxi gangs have been identified along sections that feed into the Kampala Northern bypass, from Busega to Namboole.

    He noted, “Unsuspecting passengers board the taxis, after seeing other occupants in the taxi yet these are criminals disguised as passengers.

    “The victims are attacked as the taxi starts moving and forced to surrender their cash, mobile phones, ATM cards, reveal their pin code numbers and other valuables.”

    He added that the danger with this criminal behaviour is that after robbing the victim, they push, throw or bundle them out of the moving taxi, onto the tarmac or side of the road.

    Enanga divulged that the joint task teams from Kampala Metropolitan Police, are already gathering intelligence and good clues about these criminals, taxi gangs, that are hiring female accomplices to disguise as passengers and also using fake number plates that they remove after every mission.

    Police has further given the public safety tips to follow as they travel using taxis.

    Enanga contended, “Always check the number plates if they are well fixed and appear genuine. Ensure you board your taxis from a gazetted stage.

    “Also observe if the driver has a genuine badge, which is well displayed with names and stage.

    “Avoid seating in the back seat. At least get a seat where you are visible near the door or window. For instance, sitting in the middle puts you in danger, since you can not cry for help.

    “Keep expensive items hidden in your bag, especially smartphones. Then keep your purse close to you, preferably between your feet or chest.

    “Never take a taxi alone, since it may be hard to defend yourself from the taxi gang already inside the taxi. At least board from a gazetted stage with other passengers.

    “Always have emergency numbers to call especially if the taxi is heading in the wrong direction. Be courageous and make an alarm calling for help at the window.”

    He added that all their Territorial Commanders continue to engage with stakeholders in the taxi industry to address the concern.

    “Many taxi drivers are helpful and are sources of information about current events, best restaurants, safe and unsafe neighbourhoods, entertainment places or destinations. The reason why we are concerned when their sector is infiltrated by criminals.”

    FORGED NUMBER PLATES

    Police has also warned passengers about drivers of taxis and bodas who use fake number plates, which are fixed on the empty plate, to enable them carry out robberies and go undetected.

    Police added that after these criminals have committed the crime or robbery, they remove the fake number plates and dispose them off.

    “It therefore becomes difficult to trace for the wanted car with fake number plates under the Automated Number Plate Recognition System,” Enanga maintained.

    “Our task teams and traffic officers, are now required to routinely check registration plates to confirm if they are genuine. Cloned plates are used by criminals to disguise their identity, hide the fact that it is stolen or avoid paying fines generated by camera systems.”

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    CRIME

    Justice Minister Mao To Meet Security Council Over Drone Abductions And Kidnaps…

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    Minister Norbert Mao

    Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Nobert Mao revealed that he was appointed as Chairperson of cabinet committee on human rights.

    Mao made these remarks today while appearing at the 27th joint Government of Uganda-Development Access to Justice Annual review at Speke Resort Munyonyo.

    Speaking at the event, Mao revealed that he has been tasked with his committee to look into the recent rise in cases of alleged kidnaps and abductions of people, mostly those leaning on the political opposition.

    He said, “Myself and the Attorney General have been asked to meet the security council over the increased reports of abductions and kidnaps.”

    Mao vowed to reach out on all people with missing relatives or friends to give them more information about the disappearance of their people.

    “Once we have got the details, we shall be presenting them before the Security Council.”

    He added that the committee will institute a human rights desk where all complainants of missing persons will be reported for response.

    Mao adduced that once it comes to their attention, they have the capacity to trace that person using their cameras.

    “The issue shouldn’t be politicized because it is sensitive and touches people’s lives. If it’s true they are abductions, these may be conducted by disgruntled people within government with the view of tainting its good image.”

    Mao contended that they will ensure that they do better so that when they come back for the 28th time they give themselves marks.

    According to Attorney General, Kiryowa Kiwanuka, this year’s review is being held against the background of a challenging year. The aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, which had probably challenging phenomenon, socially, economically and politically.

    He said, “Most specifically, the pandemic created unprecedented challenges and demands on access to justice community, but also tested the resilience and resolve of our coordination and collaboration model.

    “Our theme of the day is aligned with the national vision 2040 that seeks to consolidate the principles of governance, including constitutional democracy, protection of human rights, the rule of law, govt effectiveness and citizens participation in development processes.

    “President Eisenhower once said, peace and justice are two sides of the same coin. Let’s remember the need for both peace and justice, not just one of them.”

    Kiryowa further emphasized that all people with missing persons should report to them for a proper follow-up because they can’t act on allegations without facts and that he can’t follow up a case basing on rumours posted on social media.

    By Kalamira Hope

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    THE ACCIDENT IS FISHY: Lord Mayor Lukwago Orders Serious Investigations Into Why Subaru Driver Rammed Into His House…

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    Kampala Lord Mayor, Erias Lukwago has ordered for serious investigations into an accident that occurred at his home in Wakaligga, Lubaga division.

    Lukwago has called on the police to investigate the motive behind the driver who rammed into his house, which caused alot of anxiety among members of his family in the night hours of 4th, December, 2022.

    His stand follows an accident by the driver of a Subaru which crushed into the gate and hit one of the pillars of the house.

    “A short while ago, an overhasty and reckless driver of Subaru car registration number UAJ 704K rammed through the main entrance to my house, the gate forcefully flung open and badly damaged it, and the over speeding car then rammed into the pillar at the entrance to the sitting room,” Lukwago said.

    He added that following the accident, everybody was left into disarray since they didn’t know what was happening.

    He adduced, “The driver was either high on something which had intoxicated him or he was on a different mission, that is the reason we want this matter to be investigated.”

    The Subaru driver however defended himself noting that the car lost control and could not brake.

    “I tried to park against the wall but it kept going. I didn’t intend to cause any harm,” he apologized.

    Lukwago was however not convinced with the explanation insisting that if the car was moving by gravitational force, the distance from the gate to the pillar where the car landed is very small.

    “That impact you see on the pole, suggests something ‘fishy’ could have been intended and so that is where we have a problem and that is why we want the matter to be investigated.”

    The regional traffic Officer of Kampala Metropolitan Police North, Bruce Onibye, said that investigations are ongoing but the vehicle seems to have been in poor mechanical condition.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    What Killed Simbamanyo Tycoon Kamya? How Top Lawyer Tried To Use Justice Byabakama’s Electoral Commission Deal To Save His Empire…

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    In one of the meetings where the agenda was to strategise on how to save the business empire of the late Peter Kamya, the proprietor of Simbamanyo Estate limited, one of his friends, who is also a seasoned commercial lawyer proposed a multibillion Electoral Commission deal which he was very sure would save the fallen tycoon’s empire.

    Multiple credible sources have revealed to the mighty Grapevine that this happened in 2018 when Equity bank had started threatening to auction Kamya’s properties which he used as security when securing a loan.

    The buildings were Ssimbamanyo House behind Central Police Station in Kampala city and Afrique Suites situated in Mutungo.

    Kamya, who is a brother-in-law to former deputy Prime Minister Muganwa Kajura allowed one of his senior lawyers to negotiate the deal which involved looking for a new home for the Electoral Commission.

    “The lawyer’s idea was for Kamya to rent the entire building to the Electoral Commission and the money collected as rent be used to service the loan which the bank was very comfortable with but out of the blue, when the deal was almost concluded, the old man changed his mind claiming that his friend was working with the bank to impoverish him and that’s how the deal flopped,” a source said.

    He added that the deal was waiting for the greenlight from president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, who was a good friend to Kamya.

    The source added that even the Ministry of Gender was ready to shift to another building.

    Another source said that the Electoral Commission was giving Kamya a big deal compared to what he was receiving from the Ministry of Gender and within 3 to 4 years, the bank’s loan would be fully paid.

    The source said that Kamya changed his mind after getting another opinion from another shrewd young city lawyer who convinced him that the loan he got from Equity bank was not favourable and it can be challenged in Court.

    Sources said that when the bank learnt about Kamya’s plan to challenge them in court, they hastily auctioned both securities to controversial city businessman Sudhir Ruperelia’s Meera Investments Limited and Ronald Luwangula’s Luwaluwa Investments Limited, a move that frustrated Kamya’s entire plan to save his empire.

    He tried to save his empire through courts of law by filing an application seeking a temporary injuction stopping the selling of the said property but he lost the application with costs.

    He further petitioned president Museveni to save his empire arguing that it was illegally sold.

    Unfortunately, after making wide consultations, especially from the Attorney General and Bank of Uganda, the big man advised Kamya to challenge the sale of his properties in courts of law.

    He explained to him that he has no alternative to save him since he was advised that his properties were legally sold.

    Without losing hope, Kamya instructed his new lawyers led by Fred Muwema to institute a suit in the High Court Commercial Division against Crane Bank, Meera Investment Limited, Luwaluwa Investment, and lawyers of Katende Ssempebwa Company Advocates were also joined in the suit.

    The matter was allocated to Justice Stephen Mubiru, the head of the Division.

    Kamya hired Kihika Byenkya and Company Advocates to join his legal team which successfully secured an order for discovery against the respondents.

    Justice Mubiru ordered the respondents to allow the petitioner to inspect their email exchange, bank accounts and phone call logs which were made in the period when his properties were sold, an order which raised dust at the commercial court.

    Lawyers from Katende Ssempebwa Advocates petitioned Justice Rubby Opio Aweri, the Chief Inspector of Courts claiming that justice Mubiru was biased and he has to be investigated over the matter.

    He was ordered to refer the entire Ssimbamanyo file to justice Opio which Mubiru refused to do.

    Mubiru insisted that Justice Opio didn’t have powers to ask for the said file from him and guided that the matter has to proceed but lawyers challenged his action at the Court of Appeal.

    In October 2022, Justice Cheborion Barishaki of the Court of Appeal issued an order stopping Justice Mubiru from proceeding with the matter until three justices of the Court of Appeal determine the respondent’s grievances.

    Sources who have been close to Kamya revealed that Justice Cheborion’s ruling shocked Kamya and from that time, his life changed and it worsened last month and was rushed to Nairobi where he died on Friday morning.

    Sources said that other Simbamanyo Directors are set to continue with the legal fight to rescue their empire.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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