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    Novelist Kakwenza Appointed Honorary Member By PEN Germany While In Detention…

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    PEN International Germany chapter has awarded incarcerated political activist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija a honorary membership certificate.

    In a statement released today, PEN International disclosed that, “This is to certify on behalf of the Board that Mr. Kakwenza Rukirabashaija is appointed honorary member of PEN Germany for his outstanding literary work, continuously recalling the utmost importance of freedom of expression in our days.”

    PEN International is a worldwide association of writers, founded in London in 1921 to promote friendship and intellectual co-operation among writers across the world.

    The certificate was received by his lawyer Eron Kiiza who later tweeted, “Congratulations to  @KakwenzaRukira  whose honorary membership certificate of PEN GERMANY I received on his behalf @UgandaPrisons having blocked his guests from seeing him today. He is a WINNER.”

    The association has autonomous International PEN centers in over 100 countries.

    Kakwenza has been in detention for two weeks battling charges of offensive communication contrary to section 25 of the Computer Misuse Act 2011.

    It is alleged that he was arrested over comments he made against the First Son who also doubles as the Commander of the Land Forces, Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba on December 26 and 28, 2021.

     

    By Hope Kalamira

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    CRIME

    Wife Warned Husband Not to Go To Mbale – Neighbour To widow Of Man Killed In Mbale Floods Narrates…

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    The late Sam Bbosa (R) who died in Mbale floods with colleagues who were going for an introduction ceremony

    Jessica Natukunda, a resident of Nalwewuuba zone in Mulago, and a neighbour to the widow, Sarah Nakawesi  who lost her husband in Mbale floods has narrated to theGrapevine how she warned her husband three time not to travel to Mbale.

    Natukunda revealed that before Sam Bbosa, the deceased husband to Sarah left for Mbale, he first got into a misunderstanding with the wife who was pleading with him not to go with his friends.

    “Nakaweesi first refused him to travel that far and he listened to her and agreed not go, but after few minutes, Bbosa thought that his friend who was going to be introduced in Mbale would think that he neglected him, that is why he changed his mind,” Jessica narrated.

    She further revealed that before the journey, the car they were going to use with his friends first got an accident which scared the wife even more.

    “At the beginning of the journey, the Super Custom they were travelling in knocked a Toyota Harrier, but they managed to solve the issues and later continued to Mbale,” she added.

    Natukunda disclosed that Bbosa was working with Laborex Uganda Limited that deals in medicine.

    CHURCH MEMBERS THAT DIED.

    Bbosa travelled together with two pastors of Restoration church, Mulago and other members of the church.

    Some of the pastors who were killed by the floods include; Apostle Ssekatawa who was a son of former Resident District Commissioner (RDC) of Jinja, Livingstone Katende, Edwin Ahebwa who was buried in Kyenjojo and Jennifer Nyeramutuzo who was buried in Kisoro.

    FAMILY FIGHTS FOR SHS.5M

    Jackson Kiyingi, the father to one of the deceased ran to the RDC of Mbale who was given money by government to distribute to different families that were affected by floods.

    Government pledged five million to each of the families who lost relatives in the floods that ravaged Eastern Uganda and left more than 24 dead.

    According to Ahamada Washaki, the RDC of Mbale, President Museveni directed that each family with a retrieved body be given Shs.5 million per.

    Washaki added that Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja asked him to inform the public that government will also provide money to help with burial arrangements.

    Bbosa’s father has complained that he has since not been given a penny of the Shs.5m that was supposed to be given to the deceased’s family.

     

    By Kalamira Hope  and Joseph Luboyera

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    CRIME

    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

    City Tycoons In Trouble, Museveni Directs Deputy IGP Maj. Gen. Tumusiime, Brig. Gen. Lukyamuzi To Investigate Them Over Land Grabbing…

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    Resident's of Kitumbi-Bukuya rejoice after Minister of Lands Hon Judith Nabakooba told them that government was going to save them from being evicted by land grabbers in Kasanda District.

    Kampala City top tycoons are in trouble after President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni directed Deputy Inspector General of Police, Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Katsigazi Tumusiime and Brig. Gen. Moses Lukyamuzi, the head of the presidential Taskforce on Land matters to investigate them over land grabbing and illegal eviction of people.

    Multiple credible State House sources have revealed that Museveni issued the directive last month and wants the investigation report to be given to him within six months from the day when the directive was given.

    Sources explained that the president was briefed that much of the land evictions in areas of Kampala city, Mukono district, Mpigi district and Wakiso district are being fueled by Kampala city tycoons who want to posses the land occupied by bibanja tenants.

    State lands minister Dr. Sam Mayanja confirmed that president Museveni directed him to work with Maj. Gen. Tumusiime to fight land evictions in the country especially in Buganda.

    “We have been working together since the president told him to help me in fighting against land evictions. He is very cooperative and he has been helping me whenever I find problems with corrupt police officers who connive with land grabbers and illegally evict people from their land,” minister Mayanja told the Grapevine.

    He explained that for the few months he has been in president Museveni’s government, he has established that most of the illegal evictions are being masterminded by police and elements in the judiciary who guide land grabbers to illegally evict people.

    Maj. Gen. Tumusiime confirmed to the Daily Monitor that he has received the directives from the president.

    “It is true we are investigating them (tycoons). They have been using land officers to take people’s land and this has very many people stranded. We want to get to the bottom of this matter and apprehend all those tycoons and land officers involved because there are so many cases out there of people being displaced and we cannot watch this impunity continue,” he said.

    He narrated that his detectives have already penetrated the deadly land grabbers circle and many are set to be summoned to record statements over the allegations put on them.

    Maj. Gen. Tumusiime declined to name the names of the said tycoons who are under investigations, noting that if he does so, it will affect their ongoing investigations.

    On the issue of his men being implicated in illegal eviction, Maj. Gen. Tumusiime said that those who are implicated with evidence against them, will be subjected to the police disciplinary committee.

    He advised his men to stick to the law when participating in any land eviction to avoid any eventualities in the future.

    President Museveni has been assigning Brig. Gen. Lukyamuzi on sensitive matters, he was the first to command Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi’s security when he had just ascended to the throne in 1993.

    Sources said that the big man is very bitter at some city tycoons who have reached the extent of encroaching on wetlands and using their influence to grab poor people’s land.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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