Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Director of Counter Terrorism in Police, Abbas Byakagaba has said that the Allied Democratic Forces-ADF and Islamic State-IS are among the terror groups suspected to have planned last Saturday’s bomb blast at a bar in Komamboga.
At least one person identified as Emily Nyinaneza was killed in the explosion at Digida pork and bar joint in Kwata zone, Komamboga ward, Kawempe division in Kampala. Three others, Kiconco Annet, Nakitto Rose, and Ssenyonga Peter sustained serious injuries.
Byakagaba said even though Islamic State-IS has claimed responsibility, their investigations are still wide open to ensure that such claims are established beyond doubt. Byakagaba adds that ADF which is locally and internationally recognized as a terror group would not be spared in the course of the investigations.
“First we don’t work with ISIS and we cannot confirm their claims. But we are investigating all clues including claims made by ISIS. We cannot leave out ADF as being one of the perpetrators. It is still too early to tell who did it. But we are ready, prepared and moving towards getting the exact perpetrators,” Byakagaba said.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the Saturday explosion. The group says it had earlier on October 8, attacked a police post in the same area and left a policeman injured. Six days after ISIS claimed an attack on a police post, UK and France on October 14, warned their citizens in Uganda to be vigilant as terrorists were planning to attack busy places like bars, restaurants and shopping centres.
Investigations by police and army have concluded that it was a domestic terror incident. This is based on the fact that the explosion was an Improvised Explosive Device (IEDs). The bomb squad team from police and military have established that the explosion was made of among other things nails and ball bearings of a bicycle.
Asked on whether Ugandans should be more worried since the used materials are locally available and cheap on the market, Byakagaba said after their investigation, they will inform Ugandans on what to do to prevent the production of such explosives.
Between 2011 and 2020, IEDs left 135,800 civilian casualties globally. This is according to Relief Web on challenges IEDs pose for the humanitarian Mine Action Sector.
Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson said security is yet to arrest any suspect in the Komamboga attack. Security said unless suspects have been arrested, it is difficult to know whether the motive was business sabotage, political ideology, hatred or hostile terror groups.
This is not the first time Uganda has been faced with IEDs. In the late 1990s and early 2000’s, several IEDs went off in Kampala markets, streets and other busy places and they were all linked to ADF which was commanded by Jamil Mukulu who is now under custody.
However, the massive blasts that killed dozens of people were recorded on July 11, 2010, during the World Cup finals where over 70 people died in twin bombs at Kyadondo Rugby Club and Ethiopian Village Restaurant in Kabalagala.