Gen Odongo blames insecurity on politicians, drug abuse - National | NTV

Gen Odongo blames insecurity on politicians, drug abuse

Sunday September 8, 2019


The Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Jeje Odongo, has attributed the security situation in the country to political opponents of the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM), drug abuses and ex-prisoners.

In a statement to Parliament on Thursday while responding to a question on the rampant kidnaps and killings in the country, the minister said the situation in the country is not as bad as being portrayed, saying ‘political detractors’ are trying to show that the government has failed to secure Ugandans.

“The greatest success of the NRM government has been and is, among others, its ability to provide security of person and prophetic to Ugandans. Our population understands and appreciates this.

This is why the population has always voted in the NRM so that it can continue to guarantee their security. Many detractors of NRM know this and are now attempting to create the impression that the NRM has failed to provide security,” Gen Odongo said.

The minister was responding to a matter raised by Mityana Municipality MP Francis Zaake, who stated on Wednesday that the kidnaps and killings are going on without any clear response from the security agencies. The MP accused police of not rising to the occasion to assist relatives who report disappearance of their people.

Gen Odongo also revealed that analysis by security agencies shows increased rate of drug abuse among the youth is playing part in the current situation because those involved have behaviour patterns “influenced” by the consumed substance.

Concerning the killing of boda boda riders and armed robberies, the minister pointed at ex-prisoners released from jail after serving their sentences.

He said the two men captured on CCTV camera strangling a boda boda motorcycle taxi rider in Rubaga, Kampala, and those who conducted broad-day armed robbery on a hardware shop in Nansana and at a supermarket in Kanyanya, were members of an ex-prisoners gang.

“Security has been able to establish that all these four incidents were carried out by one gang. These individuals had been in prison in Luzira together. They were released in April, and soon after they resumed their criminal acts. The good news is this gang has been dealt with,” Gen Odongo said.

On Wednesday, Security Minister, Gen Elly Tumwine, had also while appearing before the Parliament’s Human Rights Committee claimed that the machete (panga)-wielding gang that terrorised parts of the country in the past two years were working for some opposition politicians.

Gen Tumwine, who was being grilled over the different Safe Houses being operated by Internal Security Organisation (ISO), said some of the suspects arrested in panga attacks confessed they were being paid Shs1.2m to kill politicians promoting the Tubalemese campaign.

The Tubalemese (let us fail them) campaign was launched in January last year by four-time presidential candidate, Dr Kizza Besigye, who was rallying Ugandans to be unwelcoming for the 317 MPs who voted to remove presidential age limits in December 2017.

However, in response to Gen Odongo’s submission, MP Zaake yesterday said government needs to rise to the occasion and curb the current situation instead pointing the finger at political opponents.

“We are not politicising this matter of kidnaps and murders. These issues are real. It is clear that people are being kidnapped and are later found dead. This is not politics at all,” he said.