A crime preventer in Kampala is in trouble for alleged theft of a motorcycle from Jinja road traffic lights police post. Umar Kiggundu was picked up from Wandegeya and transferred to Kampala central police station for the theft of a motorcycle registration number UEE 620R that was parked outside the police post on September 19th, 2020.

Luke Owoyesigyire, the Deputy Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson confirmed Kiggundu’s arrest. “We have him here at CPS on charges of stealing a motorcycle. This motorcycle had been parked at our Jinja road police post but the suspect stole it from there and we later learnt he had sold it,” Owoyesigyire said.

While being led to the cells, Kiggundu revealed that he worked with other people to steal the motorcycle but didn’t reveal his accomplices. “Even others should be arrested. I did not work alone on that day,” Kiggundu said. Crime preventers are part of an auxiliary force that was created by the former Inspector General of Police Gen Kale Kayihura to support the police force in enhancing village to village security.

The crime preventers gained too much power because their leaders such as Blaise Kamugisha reported directly to IGP. The crime preventers often clashed with Officers in Charge –OC stations or Division Police Commanders –DPCs. The crime preventers used the opportunity of Kayihura’s filed visits to report commanders who didn’t like to associate with them. As a result, some of the commanders would either be transferred or suspended.

However, the crime preventers were disbanded with the sacking of Gen. Kayihura on March 4, 2018. In his first 12 directives, Kayihura’s successor, Martin Ochola ordered all crime preventers off police stations. President Yoweri Museveni later placed the crime preventers under the Uganda People’s Defense Forces –UPDF reserve force.