Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Police, in collaboration with crime intelligence and the military, have successfully apprehended 20 suspected vandals responsible for damaging road furniture along the Northern Bypass. The crackdown involved the deployment of covert personnel, later reinforced by uniformed police officers and soldiers in the Masanafu and Busega areas, where instances of vandalism occurred, affecting road guards, security camera poles, and signposts.
The operation commenced with the apprehension of Umar Kitimbo, who not only confessed to participating in road furniture vandalism but also cooperated with investigators by leading them to his accomplices. Kitimbo implicated Jonan Abigaba, an employee of Katooke Metal Scrap, stating, “We sell whatever we vandalize to these people. Some of our colleagues are Lubigi, and Abigaba knows them.”
Subsequently, the joint efforts of the police and military led to the apprehension of several suspects, including Obedi, Eric Sanyu, John Obama, Junior Ainembazi, Bashir Kalangi, Wilson Muhumuza, and Rashid Mpugu. Luke Owoyesigyire, the deputy Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson identified additional suspects as Edward Byabashaija, Paddy Ssebunya, Monday Mukasa, Erasto Kagada, Shaban Mugarsi, Emmanuel Sande, Arinaitwe Muwamadani, and Evelyn Mujuni.
“We shall continue to investigate and carry out operations on incidents of damaging and vandalizing road furniture, security rights, and signals. This was after we registered incidents of vandalism on the Northern Bypass where metals used for road guards have been vandalized,” Owoyesigyire said.
The police spokesperson highlighted the continuation of deployments involving overt and covert security officers until all culprits are apprehended. Earlier, Allen Kagina, the Executive Director of the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA), expressed concern over the substantial costs incurred in restoring vandalized and damaged road furniture along the Northern Bypass.
She urged drivers and residents living along the Northern Bypass to actively participate in protecting road furniture, emphasizing their installation for proper road use and to prevent accidents. Owoyesigyire concluded by stating that the arrested suspects are facing charges related to damaging public property.
Additionally, it was noted that Kisenyi is a known center where vandalized road furniture, electric wires, and angle bars are sold as scrap. The collaborative efforts aim to curb such incidents and maintain public infrastructure integrity.
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