Violent crime surges nationwide

Police officers at a crime scene in Busega where two people were kidnapped, killed and their bodies dumped in Mukono District in 2019. PHOTO | MICHAEL KAKUMIRIZI

The police are grappling with a rise in violent crime with criminals using objects to hit their victims.

The incidents are high in the city suburbs and in the countryside, but joint security teams are conducting intense operations to crack down on the crime, the police spokesperson, Mr Fred Enanga, said.

“At the national level, we have witnessed a slight increase in crime, although in Kampala City, it remains relatively low because of our enforcement operations,” Mr Enanga told journalists in Kampala yesterday.

Since February, the crime rate has been high. The police have been attributing it to challenges of the reopening of the economy after two years of movement restrictions and curfew.

Mr Enanga vowed to hunt down the perpetrators.  

“We came up with wide-ranging strategies on how to combat these crimes within Kampala Metropolitan Area which have been running weeks of action against the perpetrators. We have intensified operations on planted objects and sharp instrument attacks in the Kampala Metropolitan Area and countrywide,” he said.

Mr Enanga added that they have so far carried out 56 intelligence-led operations that have identified hotspot areas that are affected by serious violence.

“We carried out operations in the dark spots in the city centre like Nakasero market, Old Taxi Park, Church House, Nkrumah railway ground, City Square, Arua Park, Nile Coach Park, Market Street among others where 91 suspects were arrested, including a notorious pickpocket called Gideon. These are going to be prosecuted,” he said.

“For those who think they can continue attacking and terrorising citizens using sharp, blunt objects and instruments to inflict violence in the community, [they] should know that we are going to pursue them in every corner and ensure they face very significant consequences,” he added

More operations

Mr Enanga also reported operations in Kabaga, Kayanga, Kitagobwa, Gyokolera, Kiti, and Masooli villages in Kampala Metropolitan North. Thirteen suspects were arrested with sharp instruments and charged.

In Old Kampala, another operation was carried out and suspects who use motorcycles to rob pedestrians, especially during traffic jam hours, were also arrested.  These operations were carried out on Sir Apollo Kaggwa Road, Bukesa Multi-tech areas, and in Wandegeya.

“The operation was successful and we managed to get eight notorious suspects, including their team leader Raymond Kizito,”  Mr Enanga said.

He also said they impounded 10 motorcycles that the suspects have been using in the attacks.

 “Other operations were in Lugala, Kawaala, Kasuubi,” Mr Enanga said.

The 2021 Police Annual Crime report shows that a total of 1,956 cases of aggravated robbery were reported compared to 1,844 cases in 2020 and of these, at least 254 cases involved firearms.

 Meanwhile, Mr Enanga said they are fully implementing the presidential directives in Mubende and Kassanda districts to contain the Ebola virus.

He said they have so far impounded 28 vehicles and 222 motorcycles whose owners flouted the presidential directives on curfew. Five suspects are in their custody.


One of the latest incidents was the killing of Suzan Alweny, a lawyer, who was an employee of Liberty General Insurance.  Thugs hit her with a blunt object on the head before they jumped on a motorcycle and fled at Kiwatule, a city suburb.  

In September, thugs used the same style to kill George Ekochu in Namugongo, Wakiso District. Even in the city centre, violent criminals are still carrying out attacks. 

In July, assailants waylaid James Kakooza, who was a city division councillor in Kamwokya Parish. He was attacked at the edge of Centenary Park in central Kampala and reportedly struck on the head with an object. The police are still hunting for his killers.