Vandalism of Utility Infrastructure Now an Act of Terrorism

Uganda’s police spokesperson Fred Enanga

The Leadership of the Joint Security Agencies has welcomed efforts from the office of the DPP, of prosecuting acts of vandalism of utility infrastructure, sabotage and destruction of public property under the Anti – Terrorism Act, 2002.

Uganda’s police spokesperson Fred Enanga

Uganda currently has a highly complex and sophisticated system of electricity infrastructure and other utility infrastructure, that all Ugandans and visitors in the country rely on for their health, safety, security and economic well-being.

The Police Spokesperson, CP, Fred Enanga, said any attack or destruction of a single point of a critical infrastructure could lead to disruptions or destruction that could harm the community and the country at large.3

Under Section 7(2) A person commits an act of terrorism for purposes of influencing the Government or intimidating the public or a section of the   public and for a political, religious, social or economic aim,  indiscriminately without due regard to the safety of others or property carries out all or any of the following acts; a) Intentional and unlawful manufacture, delivery, placement, discharge or detoriation of an explosive or other lethal device, whether attempted or  actual, in, into or against a place of public use, a state of Government  facility, a public transportation system or an infrastructure facility, with the intent to cause death or serious bodily injury, or extensive destruction likely to or actually resulting in major economic loss,(g) Serious interference with or disruption of an electronic system.

As a result, 5 suspects who include; Atusasire Richard, a 27 year old Electrician with Polocom Tech Engineering service; Mwekambe Innocent; Mwine Mutaho Johnson, a technician with UMEME Uganda Ltd, Mbarara office, Tashobya Edgar, aged 35 and Tumusiime Samuel, were charged to court, after they allegedly vandalized 500 meters of electricity wires in Butanga 2 village, in Isingiro district. Two motor vehicles Nissan pick-up registrations number UBD 498V and a Toyota Wish, registration number UBG 233A were impounded and exhibited.

‘’It is now evident from the continuous acts of sabotage and destruction of public property, that terrorism does not solely result from violent tactics such as active shooter events, IEDs, suicide and road side bombs, etc, but also from saboteurs and other disaffected persons, targeting vital utility infrastructure’’, said Enanga.

Going forward all agents, collaborators, dealers and brokers of utility infrastructure will face terrorism charges.

Enanga added that the Joint Security Agencies, the DPP and all stakeholders under the criminal justice system, remain committed to maintaining the safety of all utility infrastructures in the county and will aggressively pursue, all perpetrators causing significant damage to utility infrastructure.

‘’We also implore all members of the public to remain vigilant and report suspicious activities around power installations in their areas, to the local council and nearest security agency’’, he further noted.

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