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Police detain 14 in William Street Mosque operation

UMSC at a recent meeting

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | At least 14 people were arrested in a joint security operation during the takeover of Noor Mosque by Uganda Muslim Supreme Council-UMSC at William Street in Kampala Central Division on Sunday morning. The operation comprised officers from the Field Force Unit-FFU, Crime Intelligence –CI, Flying Squad Unit –FSU and Joint Anti-Terrorism Task Force- JATT.

They deployed strategically on the entire William Street to over the repossession exercise and avert any possible chaos. Kampala Metropolitan Spokesperson, Patrick Oyango, says the suspects were picked up for trying to interfere with a legitimate eviction exercise.

During the operation, some Muslim youth threw stones while others arrived at the premises with machetes and hammers but were surrounded by security. According to Onyango, the suspects will be charged with among other things obstructing a lawful operation, trespass, inciting violence and embezzlement.

In 2016, President Yoweri Museveni handed over the title of Plot 30 William Street to Uganda UMSC after securing it from business tycoon Drake Lubega, who had bought off the property from Hassan Basajjalaba who had obtained a sublease from UMSC.

Lubega’s acquisition of the property triggered tension in the Muslim Community in Uganda, which saw a group of Muslims break off the Old Kampala leadership and form a parallel faction at Kibuli. Sadik Musa Lukandwa, the a member of the Kampala Muslim District Council, says since 2012, the property has been under the control of Jam’iyyatu Dawa Al-Assalafiyyah, which has been collecting over Shillings 100 million without any accountability.

Lukandwa says Hajji Ayub Nyende, the Secretary General Jam’iyyatu Dawa Al-Assalafiyyah and his team will have to account for an estimated Shillings 12 billion they have collected from the property since 2012.  A case of financial impropriaty is already before the Anti-Corruption Court desk.

Hajj Musa Mutyaba, the Chairman Muslim Property at UMSC, says a new management team will be installed to over the property. He says a lot of Muslim property has been taken over by scrupulous people, adding that they also intend to recover Muslim property in Kamwokya, Nateete and Masaka among other parts of Uganda.

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