While a section of residents in Luweero District commend the recent action to have suspected criminals identified and arrested, mob action, which has left about six people killed in a spell of one week, is now a big concern among leaders.
The latest incident of a mob action against a 17- year-old boy and resident of Kigulu Zone in Wobulenzi Town Council on September 28, attracted the attention of police and local leaders. The mob lynched the suspect to death and set ablaze his remains.
Police have identified the victim as Nizimasi Katongole, who allegedly borrowed a motorcycle from a boda boda cyclist last Wednesday, but delayed to return it to the owner.
Upon returning it, the owner claimed Katongole was a thief and raised an alarm that attracted mob action against the deceased.
Police are yet to arrest the suspects including the owner of the motorcycle. The Force has, however, registered a murder case.
Three days before Katongole was lynched, two suspects that attempted to steal a motorcycle that had been packed at Centenary Bank branch in Wobulenzo Town Council, were later intercepted and lynched by boda boda cyclists at Sekanusu Zone. The mob burnt the bodies.
One of the suspects was Bashir Kizito, alias Young Mulo, who had earlier escaped from police custody at Wobulenzi Central Police Station.
Savannah region police spokesperson Issah Ssemogerere confirmed the six incidents relating to mob action.
“While the police thank the residents for trying to help in identifying criminal elements that are a source of insecurity within their respective areas, taking the law into their own hands is not the way to go. As police, we advise that suspects should be brought to the police,” he said.
Earlier on September 23, two other unidentified suspects were intercepted at Gembe Village in Katikamu Sub-county by a group of boda boda cyclists and lynched to death.
But Mr Erusto Kibirango, the Luweero chairperson, said motorcycle theft is on the increase.
“It is true that mob action is not good because cases of innocent lives are being killed because of mistaken identity. We need to build confidence within the public so that the suspects are handed over to police.
“The residents claim the suspects find their way out of the police cells and prisons. This is what we should deal with,” he said.