Residents of Kapchorwa are no doubt still in shock over the events that took place in the area in the wee hours of Sunday morning. At a few minutes past midnight, gunshots rocked the town, with the centre of the gunfire being Kapchorwa Central Police Station. Witnesses say the crossfire lasted about 40 minutes and by the time it ended, two people lay dead at the station offices, one of them an unknown assailant and the other a police officer, Hakim Kaddu. Three others who were wounded were rushed to hospital, and another officer has since died.
The night’s events were indeed scary and police will need to uncover what happened, if the residents of Kapchorwa Town are to feel safe in their homes. Many questions abound over the incident. Who were these assailants? The fact that the one who was shot dead, wore sandals made out of car tyre material and could not be easily identified is puzzling.
Where were these assailants from? It seems they attacked a police station because they wanted to get arms. Witnesses say they stole three guns and 90 bullets. They also set a suspect at the station, John Chemushak, free. Is there a connection between them and the freed prisoner? To what end are they arming themselves and taking other people’s lives?
Perhaps the more worrying aspect of this is the trend of attacks on civilians and civil servants and the slow process it takes for justice to be served.
It is more than a year since there were tribal clashes in Bundibugyo, Ntoroko and Kabarole, where 90 people were left dead and others injured. The case is yet to be concluded. When justice is not served within an appropriate time, it leaves the residents in the area feeling unsafe. This is because they believe the same attackers or others will strike again, having realised they might very easily get away with it. The attackers on the other hand are likely to feel emboldened and might plan to hit again, perhaps more ferociously. This is why cases like this need to be investigated both thoroughly and speedily.
The RDC of Kapchorwa, Ms Jane Frances Kuka, told residents that security personnel are looking for the suspects. The residents will depend on the leadership of the area as well as police to provide answers to what actually took place on Sunday morning, and to assure them of their safety.
The issue: Attack on police station
Our view: The attackers on the other hand are likely to feel emboldened and might plan to hit again, perhaps more ferociously. This is why cases like this need to be investigated both thoroughly and speedily.