Uganda:More than 10 Muslims arrested in Kiwatule Mosque police operation

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Police, for the second time in less than a week, have raided another Kampala mosque arresting and detaining more than 10 people including foreign nationals believed to be Pakistanis.

The force had by press time not given any reasons for the Thursday night raid on Masjid Abubaker Sudiq located in Kiwatule, a Kampala suburb, which came two days after another raid on Nakasero Mosque. About 18 people were arrested in the Nakasero Mosque raid. Police said the suspects were connected to suspected criminal activities and the recent killings of Muslim clerics.

Inspector General of Police, Gen Kale Kayihura said the raid at Nakasero Mosque was as a result of information revealed by a Muslim suspect in connection to the killing of Maj Muhammad Kiggundu, a Muslim cleric who was gunned down on November 26 at Masanafu Trading Centre in Rubaga Division, Kampala.

“We are still gathering details of the operation; we cannot give you half-baked information,” Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson, Emilian Kayima, said after the Masjid Abubaker raid.

How it happened

Plain clothed operatives driving in a Police van according to an eye-witness, MrSaid Lubega, arrived shortly after 8pm on Thursday and began arresting everybody in and outside the mosque.

The faithful had just finished observing Isha prayers and many had moved to their respective homes.

Some of the Mosque neighbours had to run away because Police without question was picking and bundling in the van everybody, they could lay hands on.

More police officers on a patrol pick up truck  (UP 4832) arrived after the arrests and kept vigil at the Mosque throughout the night. It is this team that arrested two other foreign nationals who returned at the Mosque late Thursday night.

On Friday morning, a Police patrol pickup (UP5445) commandeered by Mr Filbert Waibi, the Kira Road Division Police Commander (DPC) returned with two suspects—Sheikh Yunus Kabuye and one of the foreigners who were led into the Mosque by armed Police.

At around 8:30, a group later identified as scene of crime officers arrived in a Toyota Lexus car (UAK 4475). They too entered the Mosque.

Daily Monitor understands that the officers combed the mosque and other offices and recovered some items which were parceled in a bag. The bag and the two suspects were later put in the Lexus car and taken to an undisclosed location.

A highly placed Police source told this newspaper on condition of anonymity, because he is not authorised to comment on such matters, that the raid on the mosque was conducted by Police’s Flying Squad Unit (FSU). Three other mosques according to the source are set to be raided on suspicion of illegal activities.

“We tried to inquire from Police why our colleagues had been arrested, they told us it is a small thing but they [Police] refused to tell us,” Mr Dawda Wetaka the vice chairperson of Development Community of Masjid Abubaker Sudiq told Daily Monitor inside the mosque after Police had departed.

Mr Wetaka narrowly survived arrest. About two minutes earlier, he had crossed the road, when police raided the Mosque. In disbelief, Mr Wetaka said, he witnessed the arrest of his fellow worshippers.

©Alleastafrica and Daily Monitor

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