KAMPALA–Legislators have dismissed Internal Affairs minister Jeje Odongo’s explanation that attributed the killing of 21 women in Nansana and Katabi in Entebbe to ritual murder wondering whether government remained in charge of security in the country.
The MPs said that torture rape and brutality characteristic of the current women killings were not typical of ritual murders.
“In ritual murders perpetuators do not rape women or insert sticks in their private parts. They want young children and girls, who have no body piercings,” said Hon. Margaret Komuhangi (NRM, Nakasongola district).
Gen Jeje Odongo on Tuesday said that between May and September this year, a total of 21 women have been killed, with some of them showing signs of manual strangulation. Other killings have been registered in Bwaise and Bulaga town.
He said that 44 suspects have been arrested in connection with the killings and that half of them have been charged in court.
In the statement, the minister also said Police supported by other security agencies and local communities have intensified vigilance and rescued 23 women who were targets of rape and murder in Katabi and Nansana.
“Communities have come out to protect their neighborhoods backed up by Police foot and motorized patrols,” he said.
MP Komuhangi said the killings were typical of war crimes during the world wars when women were brutalised, raped and forced into prostitution. She urged police to be more vigilant and ensure the safety of Ugandans.
Hon Anna Adeke (National Female MP) said the murders were a direct attack on the dignity of women, adding that the manner in which the women are killed is an affront on feminism.
In his maiden speech, Kyadondo East MP Kyagulanyi Ssentamu said anything affecting women affects all Ugandans.
“We should look at the killings as affecting all Ugandans, not women only. Government should not wait for the problem to escalate,” Kyagulanyi said.
Hon Nabbilah Naggayi (FDC, Kampala district) said the witchcraft explanation is diversionary. She wondered what would happen when the killings move to the villages.
The Leader of the Opposition in Parliament Winifred Kiiza said killings in Entebbe, the seat of the Presidency, could be an attempt to test the county’s powerbase.
She said minister’s statement lacked information on how government intended to solve the problem.
“I propose that government announces a day of mourning for these women, who have died, as government proposes ways of stopping the killings,” she said.