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Govt asks for three months to conclude Kibwetere probe

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By SOLOMON ARINAITWE

Posted  Wednesday, April 2   2014 at  01:00

In Summary

Internal Affairs minister says the biggest challenge is to identify those who are to be compensated.

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Parliament.
It is 14 years since more than 1,000 people were burnt in a church that belonged to the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God cult in Kanungu District but the government is yet to unravel the mystery and apprehend the cult leaders.

Government has now asked for another three months to conclude the probe.
In the aftermath of the killings on March 17, 2000, the government squarely blamed the cult leaders led by the mysterious Joseph Kibwetere.
However, the Internal Affairs minister, Gen Aronda Nyakairima, told the Defence and Internal Affairs Committee yesterday that several reports and investigations into the mass killing have been inconclusive and failed to get to the bottom of the mystery.

Gen Nyakairima revealed the cult first registered as an NGO in 1993 before ultimately registering as a company in 1998. Some of its other known leaders are the Rev John Kamagara, the Rev Fr Joseph Kasaapurali and the Rev Katalibaabo.

“We want more time to put up a multi-sector committee of defence, police intelligence and knowledgeable persons that will dig up all reports to bring this to a final close. The petition by the orphans should be stayed until the team being set up completes its work. The biggest challenge is to identify those who are to be compensated,” Gen Nyakairima said.

No explanation was made on the fate of the cult leaders whose whereabouts remain unknown as several investigations have failed to establish whether they died in the inferno or escaped.

Though the leaders were put on the Interpol wanted list by the government, Gen Aronda told MPs that the timescale set by the Interpol might elapse before the cult leaders are apprehended.

“He could have perished, he could be at large,” Gen Nyakairima responded to queries about the whereabouts of Kibwetere.

Police investigations have stretched to countries like Tanzania, Kenya and Malawi but no success has been registered yet.

Some of the findings
336
The number of bodies that were recovered at the scene.

155
Bodies that were found at the residence of the Rev Fr Dominic Kataribaho in Bushenyi District.

55
The bodies that were discovered at the residence of Moses Segendo in Buziga Kampala.

sarinaitwe@ug.nationmedia.com