Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | General Katumba Wamala’s home, where he left in the morning before he was shot, is found in Bulabira in Najjera II.
This area neighbours Kulambiro, a city suburb where former Police Spokesperson, Assistant Inspector General of Police- AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi was gunned down on March 17th, 2017 together with his driver, Godfrey Mambewa and bodyguard, Kenneth Erau.
Katumba’s home is located about 300 meters from Bulabira road. The 300 meters Close connecting to Katumba’s home is tarmacked yet Bulabira road is murrum. A number of homes on the 300-meter road stretch have CCTV cameras. After connecting on Bulabira road, you drive about 200 meters and connect to Kulambiro Link Road. Once again, there is a junction here without a police camera.
Kulambiro Link road is tarmacked. It’s about a kilometer drive to the junction that connects to Kulambiro Ring Road. This road was recently tarmacked by Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA). There is no police CCTV camera on the junction connecting Kulambiro Link Road and Kulambiro Ring Road. However, there are homes with CCTV cameras. But there are two police CCTV cameras on two other junctions on Kulambiro Ring Road.
Though this is not the route (a bit long) that Katumba took. He usually takes a short route that connects to Kisasi Kyanja Road, which is about two kilometers. Katumba usually buys newspapers on a stand that is near a Mosque along Kulambiro Ring Road and Kisasi-Kyanja junction, a person interviewed said.
One of the four occupants (sitting in the back seat) was reading a newspaper when the shooting happened. Again, there is no police CCTV camera on the two-kilometer stretch connecting Kulambiro Ring Road and Kisasi-Kyanja Road. On the junction, the car crosses the road connecting Kisota Road.
So where are police CCTV cameras?
Back to the crime scene. The first police camera is immediately after Bukoto-Kisaasi flyover on the northern bypass. This is about half a kilometer from the crime scene. But there is a corner and buildings that obstruct the camera from viewing up to the crime scene. The second police CCTV camera is at the junction connecting Mariam Road to Bukoto Kisaasi Road. It’s about 700 meters from the flyover camera.
The third camera is at the Bahai and Bukoto Kisaasi Road roundabout. And on the Kisasi Kyanja Road, a CCTV police camera is at the junction connecting Sekabila Bulasiyo Road to Kisaasi Kyanja Road. This is more than two kilometers from the junction where Kisota joins Kisasi-Kyanja Road.
These police cameras come into play if the police feel the assailants used any of these roads for the exit. At this point, it’s unclear what clues intelligence has gathered on the exit routes used by the assailants. Museveni ordered the installation of CCTV cameras to curb crimes following a number of high profile murders. Installation started in Kampala metropolitan area in 2018 followed by other major towns and highways across the country.
The assassins who attacked General Katumba Wamala on Tuesday morning intercepted his vehicle at a blind spot without the police security cameras. But, there are few private homes with CCTV cameras that could offer police clues on how the attackers trailed the car that was chauffeuring the former Chief of Defense Forces-CDF as well as the people he was travelling with.
The private homes CCTV cameras could also provide detectives leads on the escape of the assailants. Already, police say they have collected footage recorded by private CCTV cameras and other filmed by eyewitnesses. However, the police might find challenges tracing the possible route taken by the attackers as they fled from the scene given the fact that the place where the shooting occurred has many blind spots.
From the crime scene, there are different routes, which could have helped the attackers to get away without a trace. For instance, from the crime scene, there is a possibility that the attackers went towards Katosa-Kisaasi road. Our reporters couldn’t spot any CCTV cameras (both police and private homes) in this area. Even at the junction linking Kisota Road to Kisaasi-Kyanja main road, there is no security camera yet most of the buildings around are also bare.
It’s unclear why there is no police camera at this junction because most police cameras are often installed at junctions. Several police investigators were seen at Kisota Road Kisaasi-Kyanja junction trying to figure out whether this could have been the exit route used by the assailants. Not even interviews with the residents in the vicinity could help.
“They are asking us whether we saw Boda-bodas coming from Kisota Road after the shooting. But how can you tell that this was assailant’s Boda-boda?” a boda cyclist who had interacted with the investigators asked. Police officers also tried to look for possible CCTV cameras from Little Café, a fast-food restaurant in the first building along Kisota road off Kisasi Kyanja road.
Although this place has two cameras, they are pointed towards the entrance of the restaurant and parking space, which means that they couldn’t have captured the assailants. “Our camera is purposely to monitor who arrives here and also keeping an eye on the clients’ vehicles. They don’t see what happens down the road,” one of the café attendants who identified herself as Easter told our reporter.
Besides, the main exit, there are three small routes that the assailants could use to connect to the northern bypass, according to the geographical analysis of the crime scene. Our reporters did not see any CCTV cameras on the shortcuts. If assailants used any of these small routes to accesses the northern bypass, it will be hard for investigators to connect dots on whether they drove heading right towards Kalerwe or left to Bweyogerere.
This is the section of the northern bypass between the Bukoto-Kisaasi flyover up to Acorn International School. It’s another blind spot because our reporters did not see any camera in the vicinity. Given that the junction connecting Ntinda and Kisasi on the northern by-pass is still, under construction, it could be the reason why police have not installed CCTV cameras at this spot.