Over 60 Youths Arrested Over Northern Bypass Attacks

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OVER 60 YOUTHS ARRESTED OVER NORTHERN BYPASS ATTACKS
Police have arrested 60 youths believed to be behind the attacks on motor vehicles and pedestrians on the Northern Bypass.
Police spokesperson Fred Enanga said they arrested more than 78 suspects, but after screening, they ended up with 60 who will be taken to court.
“We have managed to arrest gang members. We have processed 60 suspects. Some of the suspects were involved in car vandalism, property grab and narcotics. Many of the suspects are youth between 14 and 25 years of age,” Mr Enanga said yesterday.
The Northern Bypass has become a haven for criminals, who waylay motorists with pavers that they throw on windscreens to be able to gain access to the property in the motor vehicles.
Attacks have continued on the Bypass since it was opened to traffic in October 2009.
The criminal incidents are expected to increase unless the police intensify patrol and surveillance as the government lifts curfew against the spread of Covid-19.
Mr Enanga said they have had challenges to secure safety at the 14-mile road, which started from Namboole at Kira Municipality to Busega in Rubaga Division, because of unfriendly terrain and slums.
“We need to look at the other drivers of crime on the Bypass. Firstly, the environment alone gives opportunity for criminality. There is a poor lighting system on the section from Kyebando up to Ntinda. There is an extensive drainage system with poorly planned settlements along the area,” he said.
He said there are a number of youth gangs who are homeless and look for quick cash rather than work.
This publication also found out that most of the youth engaged in criminality sleep at the flyovers. The victims of gang attacks, according to police, identified the same places as danger zones.
“We really need to find a way of helping the youth out of this economic desperation which drives them into criminality,” Mr Enanga said.
He said they have spread out police officers on the road and deployed their covert teams from Busega Township to Namboole Township that will monitor the road.
The spokesman of Uganda National Roads Authority, Mr Allan Ssempebwa, said they will erect lights at all junctions and interchanges soon to support police efforts to secure the Bypass.
Two suspects, who were caught attacking vehicles with pavers, told police officers that they work in gangs.
One of the suspects said after robbing items in the cars or from pedestrians, they sell electronics to shop attendants in Kampala City.

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