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Crime & Investigation

UPDF Colonel Arrested In ‘Arms Deal’ Shootout

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Army spokesperson Brig Richard Karemire

Lt Col Richard Muhangi, the Commanding Officer of the 3rd Mountain Battalion under 2nd Division in Western Uganda, has been detained following the shooting of two civilians in Ntoroko District this past Friday, June 23.

The army spokesperson Brig Richard Karemire told ChimpReports on Monday that on the fateful night, two civilians were found dead and Col Muhangi himself injured on the leg and arm.

The deceased were identified as Erasmus Irumba from Nyakasenyi and Siet Kanyoro from Budiba.

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“The cause of the scuffle is under investigation but preliminary information point to an operation by the security officers to apprehend would have been illegal arms buyers,” said Karemire.

“Both the Ntoroko District Police Commander and District Internal Security Officer who were with the Commander at the time of the incident, have also been arrested,” he added.

The army publicist said Lt Col Muhangi was being held at UPDF General Army headquarters at Bombo.

Karemire said Muhangi is “Suspected to have been involved in the death of the two civilians,” adding, “We remain committed to a disciplined professional force.”

ChimpReports understands DPC Ntoroko ASP Gerard Atuhaire, DISO Brian Babishanga and SPC Abdul Kyalimpa were arrested on Saturday and detained at Fort Portal Police station on allegations of murder and attempted murder.

The others netted on Monday morning are Luke Dhadalamu a bodyguard of Lt.Col.Muhangi, Private Ivan Bakasaba and Private Irema Saulo Balimpa.

Karemire said the army was investigating whether the suspected arms buyers were armed.

How it started

Ruwenzori Police Spokesperson Lydia Tumushabe said the DISO received information on the alleged buying of illegal fire arms by some people.

“The DPC, DISO and the Commander of the 3rd Mountain battalion decided to lay a trap using 10 police guns and 6 loaded magazines to get the suspects,” she added.

Tumushabe said the operation led to the arrest of suspects but that in the scuffle Irumba and Kanyoro were shot dead while a bodyguard of Lt. Col. Muhangi shot his boss in the leg.

Muhangi was briefly admitted at Fort Portal Regional hospital for treatment before being arrested and transferred to Bombo.

The PRO said exhibits recovered from the scene include four motorcycles without number plates and the DPC’s Private vehicle.

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