The Police Flying Squad on average recovers 7 out of the 60 vehicle stolen from various parts of the country each month, Herman Owomugisha, the unit commandant has revealed.
According to Owomugisha, most of the vehicles are recovered enroute to the Democratic Republic of Congo-DRC and a few others to South Sudan.
In his end of the year report, Owomugisha notes that his unit has managed to recover 94 motor vehicles and arrested dozens of robber since inception in July 2013.
The Police Flying Squad is mandated to handle violent crimes and vehicle robbery. Owomugisha notes that, vehicle theft has continued to thrive due to poor neighborhood watch.
He says that, their intelligence shows that the number plates of most stolen vehicles are changed a few kilometers from where they are stolen, which makes it difficult for police track them down.
54-year-old Samuel Lukanga, a traditional herbalist from Busega, a Kampala city suburb is one of the few whose vehicles were stolen and recovered en route to the Democratic republic of Congo.
His Toyota Land Cruiser Prado registration number UAM 476G valued at UGX 37 million was stolen at gunpoint from his driver John Mutumba in March 2014 at about 11pm on his way home.
It took close to a month, for the Police Flying Squad to track the vehicle through intelligence to Congo.
He describes the recovery of his vehicle as miracle saying that, immediately after the theft he reported to police but this didn’t help since the number plate had already been changed.
Unlike the robbery in Lukanga’s case, most vehicles are picked from the parking areas, leaving the owner with his vehicle key in hand.
According to Owomugisha, while some vehicles are stolen by people with copies of duplicate keys, others are opened after a great deal of trial.
Theft of motor vehicles has become hard to stop.
Four years ago, motor vehicle owners were advice to engrave their number plates on the windows of their vehicles so it would help in tracing of vehicles whose number plates have been changed.
Five years down the road, Kisekka market is selling rubbers to these engraves and it only takes less than 10 minutes to delete the number plate.
The effective methods that can be used to make theft of motor vehicles hard and recovery easy include installation of original tracking systems into the vehicles which the robbers have yet to find a way of removing as well as genuine alarm systems that can alert the owner.
However, Owomugisha says some of the vehicles are reluctant to install the system citing huge costs.