The Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Jeje Odong has revealed plans to prohibit all commercial and private vehicles from using tinted windows, as a way of curbing criminal activity in the country.
Odong said that public service vehicles must remove the tints from their windows and that consultations are ongoing to have the same enforced on private cars.
“Public service vehicles with tinted cars must remove that tint. Many people have hidden and done bad things through hiding in these tinted vehicles,” Gen Odong said.
The Minister was Monday night appearing on a live televised show with other top security chiefs to address the nation on the state of security.
The same address featured Minister of Security, Gen Elly Tumwine, Inspector General of Police, Okoth Ochola, Minister for Defence and Veteran Affairs, Adolf Mwesige and Chief of Defence Forces, Gen David Muhoozi.
Government spokesperson, Ofwono Opondo and the Commissioner of Prisons, Johnson Byabashaija were also part of the team.
Odong’s proposal to ban tinted windows is part of new stringent policies being introduced in the transport system in the wake of a spike in serious crime. Earlier yesterday, the President announced that government would ban the use of hoods for both riders and motorists who use boda bodas for transport.
It is reported that killers who shot dead Arua municipality MP, Ibrahim Abiriga and his bodyguard, Kongo Saidi last Friday were riding on boda bodas and that they were covering their heads with hoods.
Meanwhile, the Security Minister, Gen Tumwine said that government is acquiring chips that will be installed in boda bodas to ease their tracking.
“Each boda boda will carry a chip and will be supplied at no budget to the government. It is coming very soon because it is urgent and important,” Tumwine said.
Police chief, Okoth Ochola said that Police is set to engage Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) over registration of all boda bodas in Kampala.
On the whole, the two and a half hours debate narrowed down to one issue – the security agencies are on top of the situation and that the country should rest assured that Uganda is largely restive.
Many of the panelists argued that the country is enjoying more stability than the past, evidenced in the fact that no part of Uganda is currently experiencing an insurgency.
Regarding the unresolved criminal cases which involve the deaths of Muslim clerics, former State Prosecutor, Joan Kagezi and former Senior Police officer, Andrew Kaweesi, the security officials asked that Ugandans be patient as investigation carry on.
“For many times, people are always demanding to end it now, those questions have always been there but media doesn’t know how long it takes to end these investigations,” Tumwine said.
He blamed the media for instilling fear and anxiety among the public, and urged for balanced and objective reporting.
“We would like the media to be objective, and balanced, not take on their own views. Terrorism is instilling fear in the public with information that isn’t really happening, we would like the media to cooperate with us to curb this,” he said.
On the issue of gun violence and what is being done about it, CDF, Gen David Muhoozi said; “We are taking stock of all fire arms in the country so that we isolate those using these weapons wrongly”.
He partly blamed the problem to the ungoverned parts of DR Congo and the region’s porous borders that are taken advantage of by wrong groups such ADF and others to commit crime.
The CDF spoke to the need to again establish Local Defence Units (LDUs) at the grassroots which will reinforce the security agencies. He said this approach is cost friendly and will ensure citizens are not vulnerable.
Asked to rate the performance of the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF), Gen Muhoozi said the forces have done well in terms of their core work which he said is to defend the country from external threat.
“We also project force for good outside our frontiers; we have given hope to Somalia, been to South Sudan, fought Kony in Central Africa Republic and recently used our air cababilities against the ADF in DR Congo,” Gen Muhoozi said.