The Chief of Military Intelligence (CMI), Brig Abel Kandiho, on Monday evening confirmed that they have in detention a one Ronald Asiimwe, aka, Kanyankole, who is believed to be the architect of the kidnap and murder of Susan Magara.
Magara, who was kidnapped on February 7 from Kabaka Anjagala Road in Rubaga Division, Kampala, was later killed and her body discovered dumped at Kitiko, between Kigo and Kajjansi near the Entebbe Expressway.
Over the weekend, social media was awash with news that CMI had arrested Kanyankore, who was allegedly hired by a businessman to kidnap Susan and demand a ransom from her parents.
And Brig Kandiho confirmed that Kanyankore and several others were arrested but refused to reveal more details, saying it would jeopardize investigations.
Earlier police sources had told this website that the kidnap was a result of the deal gone bad with the deceased’s father. Mr Magara, who hails from Bunyoro Sub-region, owns a string of businesses, including Bwendero Dairy Farm in Hoima, where Susan worked.
And according to social media sources, it is alleged that the plan to kill Susan started a year ago by a yet-to-be identified businessman whose alleged interest was to kidnap and kill Susan following a deal, which he had reportedly been involved in with Mr Magara. The businessman reportedly contacted Kanyankole, who he had previous hired on an assassination mission.
It is alleged that the businessman offered Kanyankore Shs300 million to kidnap Susan.
Kanyankole and other killers, believed to be still at large, reportedly kidnapped Susan from her home in Rubaga Division in Kampala on February 7 and took her to Wakiso District. They are said to have contacted her family so as to keep demanding money from her, while warning them not to involve police or other security agencies in the matter.
This version matches with the intercepted audio, in which the kidnappers show clear knowledge of the deceased’s father, implying that the kidnappers were known to the family and that the money they demanded was not ransom but their share of a deal which went bad.
“You know these things, don’t dare include the police, do not inform any security agency and do not waste your time. Do not call Interpol, police or ISO. I know this game, I have played it for long. Otherwise I will do something to Susan (Magara) that you will never forget till you die,” one of the kidnappers is heard saying in Runyoro.
A family member is also heard responding: “I cannot sir, I won’t do it sir, No sir (in Runyoro).
The kidnapper adds: ‘Everything you try to do, everything, I know you, I have read the papers, you stay in Lubowa, I know your home in Hoima, your firm. Be loyal and cooperative or else you will get Susan (Magara) in pieces should you even be lucky. If you mess around you will not get a thing.”
We had earlier reported that Mr Magara was forced to raise the money after the kidnappers sent him a video, which showed them chopping off his girl’s fingers and threatening to kill her if they did not raise the $1 million (about Shs3.6 billion) ransom, which was later reduced to Shs700m, following negotiations.
However, Magara was killed by her kidnappers despite her father paying the money.
Kanyankole was reportedly picked by operatives from to the Joint Anti-Terrorism Taskforce (JATT), the operations unit for CMI, and ISO. It is alleged that he was found with police officers, who claimed that Kanyankole was their informant when JATT tried to arrest him. In the process, the police officers were also reportedly arrested.
This comes after it emerged that the killers used over 17 SIM cards and different mobile handsets in a manner that could not allow police monitor or track them.
Last week, President Museveni said Susan’s killers will be arrested.