KCCA enforcement officers’ brutality raises skills question

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By AMOS NGWOMOYA

Kampala- The professionalism of the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) law enforcement body has once again been thrust in the limelight after a stray bullet fired by one of the officials hit a 14-year-old boy on Saturday evening as they were chasing street vendors on Nakivubo Road in downtown Kampala.

Jamiru Mubiru, 14, who works in Tesco Plastics building as a cleaner, underwent surgery at Mulago Referral Hospital to remove the bullet that was lodged in his neck.

The Saturday incident has yet again sparked off criticism against KCCA’s law enforcement officers, with many accusing them of using excessive force to evict street vendors.

The level of education of the enforcement officers is not clear and neither is the recruitment advertised anywhere.

The group has previously been accused of extortion, brutality, bribery and vandalism of property of street vendors.

Last year, they were on the spot for allegedly causing the death of a street vendor, Olivia Basemera, who plunged into Nakivubo channel and drowned.

She was running away from the law enforcement officers who were arresting street vendors on Jinja and Mukwano roads. The family of the deceased has since sued KCCA.

No follow-up
Mr Rinton Ssozi, the manager of the building where Mubiru was shot, told Daily Monitor that although they reported the Saturday incident to police and KCCA, they have not made any follow-up.

“When he [Mubiru] was shot that evening, we immediately took him to Norvik Hospital on Bombo Road but they later referred us to Mulago [National Referral Hopsital]. We reported the matter to both KCCA and police, but none of them is willing to help us,” he said.

By the time Mubiru was shot, Mr Ssozi said, he was cleaning on the fourth floor of the building.

Mr Ssozi said they want police and KCCA to visit the place to ascertain the truth of the matter. Mr Isa Nsubuga, Mubiru’s father, said his son’s health is worrying.

“Doctors have recommended that we buy medicine from the pharmacies but I don’t have money. I wish KCCA and Police could help me out. My son is innocent and all I want is justice,” he said.

Mr Peter Kauju, the KCCA director of public and corporate affairs, last evening denied allegations that KCCA law enforcers shot the boy. He said the shooting originated from police officers.

Mr Kaujju also said no one was yet to report to KCCA about the matter.
Kampala Deputy Lord Mayor Sarah Kanyike said an ordinance is in the offing to streamline the operations of the law enforcement officers.

“As political leaders at City Hall, we have always queried the manner in which law enforcement officers are recruited but we do not get any substantial explanation from the Human Resource Directorate. They do not have enough training and that is why they brutalise the people they arrest,” she said.

Recent grilling
Mr Richard Lule, the KCCA director of human resource and administration, faced a rough time during a recent council meeting when he was tasked to explain the manner in which law enforcement officers are recruited.

He was asked to furnish the councillors with details of all law enforcement officers and their level of education. He did not give a substantial answer.

They further queried how Mr Rusoke Kituma, the head of KCCA law enforcement team, joined KCCA. Mr Kituma is a police officer.

Background
Currently, law enforcement officers fall under the category of temporary staff at KCCA who have a four-month renewable contract.
Pay. According to the KCCA salary structure, a copy of which we have seen, a law enforcement officer earns a gross salary of Shs550,000 per month.
Station. They are deployed at City Hall, the city centre and in all the five divisions. KCCA statistics show that there are 333 law enforcement officers.

Monitor.co.ug

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