Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A least two people have been shot dead and 24 others arrested by police crime intelligence in a crackdown on a racket of robberies to finance ADF terror activities in Kampala.
Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson identified one of the deceased as Farouk Tomusange, alias Juma Oti, ringleader of a criminal gang that has been participating in several city robberies, including the robbery of 3 million shillings at Equatorial Mall in Kampala from a Somali national identified as Muhammad on 25th of last month.
According to police, the same gang was behind the attack and robbery of Magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu at Green Hill Academy on 17th July last year, and the robbery of 400million from Lee Yin Tang, a Chinese businessman along Nkurumah road.
The same gang was reportedly behind the attack on an Indian national Juwan Lal along Mawanda road recently and the robbery of 100,000 Euros from Kushamohan Konnakutty, an Indian businessman along Jinja road traffic junction.
Enanga said the gang leader Tomusange who has been on the run for some time was shot dead on 5th June, 2022, from Kyeyagalire zone, Makindye, during a violent counter operation where he resisted the operatives.
Another deceased gang leader has been identified as Mugalu Ibra alias Nakwero, who was shot dead during a foiled robbery of 150milllion and two mobile phones from Gitau Abdallah, a Kenyan businessman along Apollo Kaggwa road, Old Kampala earlier this month.
Police preliminary findings indicate that the former convict was also involved in the other robberies of USD 4,500 and 20 million shillings from Keqiu Fang Malee, a Chinese businessman, USD 80,000 at Bakuli Mengo, USD 30,000 at Kasubi and USD 10,000 from 3 separate South Sudanese business people.
“The criminal gang network conducted effective surveillance against foreign businessmen transporting cash, which they attacked at suitable get-away points,” Enanga elaborated. “They further utilized various methods of secret communication to conceal their criminal activities. Several exhibits of motorcycles, mobile phones and documents were recovered.”
Enanga said that during the operations, Crime Intelligence operatives also arrested 24 suspects on charges of robberies with the aim of financing Allied Democratic Forces-ADF terrorism activities in Congo and Uganda.
Among those arrested is Isma Kyeyune, a 30 year old boda boda rider and resident of Bulaga-Nakabugo in Wakiso district, who was allegedly recruited in the ADF ranks in 2021, by Adam Matovu alias Manhajji from Kalerwe.
Other suspects include Musa Mubiru, Kiiza Patrick, Kinene Hamis and Wadimba Jackson among others. Police says the suspects together with others still at large paid allegiance to the ADF.
“They have admitted to conspiring with others, to stage robberies of aggravated nature,” Enanga said. “The proceeds were being used to finance ADF activities, including recruitment of future terrorist fighters, and also cover welfare costs of families of ADF fighters.”
Enanga said Kyeyune and Musa Mubiru were trained in combat and martial art skills from Kawempe-Ttula, together with Ajode, Musa Kabanda and Mwebe, who were arrested recently from the ADF hub in Luwero.
Police says that the counter-terror operations are still ongoing to dismantle all ADF terror cells in the country.
“Our dedicated Crime Intelligence teams are continuing to disrupt the flow of terrorist funding, both indigenous and from external sources,” Enanga stated.