Local leaders and residents of Rakai and Masaka districts are demanding the resignation of General Kale Kayihura, the Inspector General of Police over the mystery murders in the area.
At least 35 people have been killed in the Southern Uganda districts of Masaka, Lwengo, Sembabule and Rakai by unidentified assailants since this year begun. 25 of the murder victims were killed in Rakai district alone. Six people have been killed in separate attacks since the beginning of this week in Rakai and Kyanamukaka Sub County in Masaka district.
The latest murder victims have been identified as Sebastian Ssenkubuge, John Kiryoowa and another only identified as Mutebi, all residents of Lwoya village in Lwamaggwa Sub County in Rakai district.
A prominent pineapple farmer in Minyinya village in Kyanamukaka Sub County identified as Tony Sande Mutebi was robbed of his money and killed by unidentified assailants on Monday. His body was found dumped near a lodge in Kyanamukaka. Two other people including Samuel Byakatonda and Rose Namukasa, both residents of Kabayola cell in Sembabule town council were also killed in the wee hours of Tuesday. The latest murders bring to 35, the number of people killed under mysterious circumstances since the beginning of their year.
In most of the murders, the assailants drill holes through walls to gain access to their victims and hack them to death. As a result of escalating murders, several residents and leaders in Masaka, Sembabule and Rakai district are questioning the competence of Kale Kayihura, the police chief to guarantee their safety.
Paul Migadde, the Kyanamukaka sub county LC 3 chairperson whose neighbor is one of the latest murder victims, says Kayihura has failed to curb the murders. Fred Nkonge, a resident of Masaka says it is high time Kayihura resigns because he has failed to solve one out of the 30 murders cases reported.
He says that ever since the murders started in Rakai with the killing of Steven Mugambe, the pastor of Kyebe Pentecostal Church together with his eight family members police has not picked up any suspects in connection to the murders.
He says the failure by police to arrest a single suspect means Kayihura has failed to perform his duties and should consider resigning. Robert Benon Mugabi, the Rakai LC5 Chairman concurs with those calling for Kayihura’s resignation. Mugabi says residents are in panic of the escalating murders. He wonders why police has failed to find out who is killing people in his district. Mugabi asks Kayihura to explain why they managed to track down the suspected killers of Cerinah Nebanda, the Butaleja district Woman MP in Mombasa–Kenya yet it has failed to find even a single suspect in connection with the Rakai murders.
Agnes Namusiitwa, a resident of Kakuuto wonders why police has been arresting and releasing on bond some of the suspected killers. She suspects that some of the people being released could be behind the murders. Maxwell Ogwal, the Southern Region Police Commander who is overseeing investigations into the mystery murders says they have done everything possible to find the suspects but they have been let down by residents.
He says that their investigations show that the murders are related to land wrangles, family disputes and witchcraft. Ogwal says there is no need for residents to take it out on Kaihura saying they investigated some of the cases but none of the residents showed up to pin the suspects.
Haruna Kasolo, the Kyotera county Member of parliament says that they summoned Kayihura to appear the public hearing in the district on Thursday to explain the killings.