Police confirmed Tuesday that a 23-year-old Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) attached suicide bomber conducted the attack that targeted 52 passengers on a Swift Safaris Bus destined for Ishaka.
‘‘He has been identified as Isaac Matovu- also known as Mustafa and a resident of A-Zone, Kireka in Kampala,’’ Police spokesperson Mr Fred Enanga said in a press briefing.
Police informed that the deceased militant who has for many years been on the Force’s antiterrorism unit ‘‘most wanted list was found with a detonator, bicycle bearings- and with other metallic tools that he wore in form of a vest and belt.’’
Police suspect that an unknown accomplice could have helped Matovu to beat Kisenyi Bus Terminal security to sneak the explosive -similar to the one used in a weekend city bombing- into the bus via a window.
‘‘We are looking for his accomplice who stopped and moved out of the bus shortly after Maya before the explosion,’’ Mr Enanga told journalists at the police headquarters in Kampala.
Urging public vigilance, police signaled that the ‘dangerous’ insurgents that account for over 40,000 deaths and thousands of civilian displacements in neighbouring DR Congo- have penetrated society.
‘‘There’s evidence that they have been registering and training -especially unemployed- youths. They have started with soft targets but we suspect that they are planning to carry out a deadlier attack,’’ Mr Enanga observed.
According to Mr Enanga, preliminary police findings show that a Ugandan fugitive in DR Congo identified as Meddie Nkalubo aka The Punisher has since August 2021 been at the helm of coordinating domestic terror attacks associated with the IS linked-ADF terror cell.
‘‘He (Nkalubo) is among those that planned bombing mourners at the late DIGP Lt Gen Paul Loketch’s burial in Pader District. He organised a recent botched attack at a police station in Kawempe and is also behind the Komamboga attack,’’ Mr Enanga said.
Police have since arrested over three people accused of being terrorist groups’ financial handlers.
‘‘We are investigating Abdul Rahman Wayibi and Ssanyu Nakitende after they received over Shs450m that they were ordered to share amongst ADF elements within the country. Aisha Katushabe was on Monday arrested in Hoima City as one of the recipients of the money,’’ Mr Enanga said.
Without naming the firms, police disclosed that they ”are investigating how an additional $400, 000 entered the country trough oil companies and real estate outfits for possible circulation amongst members of the ADF militant group” already famed in the East African region for innumerable atrocities.
Last week joint security forces also arrested 13 people with links to past terror activities in multiple army detaches and some police stations across the country.