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MPs to Museveni: DNA not solution to kidnaps, murders

A section of legislators have said that President Museveni’s loss of touch with the reality in the country is why he thinks capturing the palm-prints and the DNA of everybody can help eliminate criminality in Uganda.

The MPs said that the president’s opinions on the installation of cameras, capturing the palm-prints and DNA of everybody to curb criminality is farfetched on the basis that Museveni has been talking about the same each time a prominent person is murdered.

Police CCTV monitor room at Naguru. Museveni last year ordered for installation of CCTV cameras following the murder of police spokesperson Andrew Felix Kaweesi

Museveni, in a statement following the murder of 28-year-old Susan Magara this week, suggested capturing of palm-prints and DNA of every citizen arguing that it would help curb such criminality.

Magara was kidnapped on February 7 and was found dead 21 days later. Her captors reportedly demanded for $1m (about Shs 3.5 billion) in ransom money. It is alleged that they used up to 17 Sim-cards to communicate with Magara’s family during the three-week ordeal.

“DNA records of everybody are good to compare with blood samples, sweat, sperm etc found at the scene of the crime. Palm-prints are better than thumbprints because the criminal may leave the palm-print and not a thumbprint,” Museveni said in his statement.

Some MPs including Jonathan Odur (Erute South), Theodore Ssekikubo (Lwemiyaga) and Fred Baseke (Ntenjeru South) argue Uganda, a poor country struggling with a lot of other challenges cannot afford DNA and palm print capturing in addition to failure to address challenges within the heads of security among others. Last year, government ordered for a switch off of all unregistered Sim-cards following the murder of former police spokesperson Andrew Felix Kaweesi. 

“His statement on the gruesome murder of Magara had value only in as far as conveying his condolence to the bereaved family. The absence of CCTV, DNA and palm prints does not automatically prevent criminality; after all, it is the same police and other security organs personnel who shall have control over such systems,” Odur said.

Odur added: “is the absence of CCTVs, DNA and finger prints responsible for fights between his generals, unemployment, marginalization, low remuneration of civil servants, corruption and lack of political will on the side of NRM? If his best previous performance was security, which is now deteriorating, then no doubt his best is past getting behind him.”

The legislators say that Museveni’s advisors are failing him on certain issues and that he does not realize the capacity of his government in handling them, the fact that people feel the country is increasingly becoming insecure.

“How can the president try to tell Ugandans that in all centers, he will make sure that there are tracing points so that when you are captured your DNA and finger/palm prints can be stored in the data bank, where is the data bank, where is the backbone to that data bank?,” Ssekikubo said.

Baseke said that while he agrees with the president, Uganda as a country is still struggling with meager resource envelope. “It’s a good idea but how are we going to achieve it in the short? How much money are we going to put in?” Baseke said.

According to Ssekikubo, the president should be honest to Ugandans because he proposed sometime back in his state of nation address of 2016 that cameras were to be installed in several parts of the city and towns but up to now, nothing has been done as said.

“He repeated the same in 2017, in March after the murder of Kaweesi, he repeated the same, then the murders of all those prominent persons [state prosecutor Joan] Kagezi among others and now this time round the president is not telling Ugandans that criminals have mustered the art,” Ssekikubo said.

“They know that government has no way it can track them down, that’s why they can do their criminality with impunity. The president should know that country is getting impatient, the country is getting tired. We need less words, we need action,” he added.

At the funeral of Kaweesi, the president directed that because of repeated murders in the city and other towns, immediate installation of cameras in all major towns of Uganda and along the highways was to be worked on.



+1 #1 Odongkara 2018-03-03 12:03
Fix the criminality in the police and other security organs, create employment opportunities for the jobless youth, fight corruption are key approaches towards mitigation of crime in Uganda but it's idle talk if the president thinks installation of CCTV cameras will do away with crime.

This will only benefit the privileged of society what about the majority of the rural and urban poor, is security not for them? Our president doesn't think correctly anymore what a pity!
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-1 #2 WADADA rogers 2018-03-03 13:49
For the first time i want to agree with our MPs. It is not sim card registration, not even national identity, not even camera, not even DNA, it is change of heart fairness in society, proper up bringing and love for one another that will end crime in this country.

Crime is everywhere in the world even those that developed so many years ago. In fact it is part of a developing society, to push for DNA my man Museveni is chewing more than he can swallow,
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+1 #3 gwok 2018-03-03 17:24
" ... capturing the palm-prints and the DNA of everybody ...." !!! Dear Parliament, please forbid such extreme intrusion into our lives.

The monitor what we say on phones, they want to have cameras everywhere to watch over us, they have our biometrics and now the want to have our DNA as well.

Summary: Our internal secirity organizations have surely failed us. (a) They are consuming a big part of our national budget that should have been put to other better use.

(b) They harrass us un-necessarily. (c) They are corrupt. (d) They are there and tuned to secure the regime only. (e) " ...The Banyankole are the most qualified ...." {a quote from a known source} (f) etc .... [The list is long].
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+1 #4 rubangakene 2018-03-03 20:32
DNA, yes DNA! Ugandans have "inherited the crime DNA" from our leaders who came from the bush and started living Utopian-style; building huge mansions, buying mansions overseas, stashing money in foreign banks and so on.

A police officer lives in a mansion like a millionaire, a boda-boda rider marries ten wives and houses them comfortably across the city....... Unless this "DNA" is eradicated, crime in Uganda will be the norm.

What is the use of the CCTV when you don't even know who your next door neighbour is.

Hotels registries are never 'monitored' by the security. Customs men are 'eating', immigration men are 'eating', every Tom, Dick and Harry/Mary is at the game.

Now tell me who really has the balls to sort this mess we have got ourselves into. We need a miracle from above! Kagame has employed camera drones to try and solve crimes, maybe we could try that cheaper method than CCTV?
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+1 #5 charles semambo 2018-03-04 06:15
Even Museveni himself knows that he has no political will nor the desire to do that, let alone finding the funds to procure the same.

if the thugs can even know that the president was talking to the father of the victim, then he must know that they have already reached in his bedroom.
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+1 #6 miki 2018-03-05 09:59
A data bank for anything is useless if Mr. Museveni's corrupt political hacks are in charge of it.

Security officials who rent out guns to armed robbers can switch off the cameras if somebody pays for it.

They will, alter the DNA data and replace it with that from chimps if they can do it.

They , will replace the finger print information with chicken foot print data for the right price.

Does Mr. Museveni know that some Ugandans have 10 identity cards or passports in different names?

A piece of land in Museveni's Uganda can have five officially issued titles to different people, Forgeries of documents including academic qualification, medical records motor vehicle registrations.

Dismantle the corruptocracy before setting up new data banks. Unless Mr. Museven intends to keep the new data banks under his bed in state house , and guarded by a pack of dogs, far away even from his Special Forces Command??l That is how bad things are in Uganda,
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