Kampala, Uganda | URN | The Directorate of Crime Intelligence (DCI) has resumed operations against civilians wearing and selling military uniform replicas in the Kampala metropolitan area.
Covert teams have been deployed to walk through the suburbs of Kampala and arrest any person found wearing or selling clothes similar to those worn by the military and other security agencies.
The Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) Act requires that members of the public refrain from wearing any items which may be perceived by authorities as military in nature. These include clothing items with camouflage patterns, khaki, plain army green, navy blue, and red clothing with accoutrements which may resemble military attire.
Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson Patrick Onyango says that the public could survive arrest by voluntarily taking the attires to nearby police stations or army detaches. Onyango said military uniforms, capes, jackets, belts and shoes will all lead to the arrest of people in possession of them.
DCI headed by Brig. Gen. Chris Damulira said there are several cases of robberies targeting mobile money operators and those transporting money that have been carried out by criminals donned in army-like attires.
In recent months, mobile money robberies have become rampant and many people including police officers and private security guards have been shot dead. Criminals, sometimes wearing military uniforms have robbed and killed people in areas of Nsangi, Mutundwe, Kassanda and Mubende.
Col Deo Akiiki, the deputy spokesperson of Uganda People’s Defence Forces- UPDF added that in some cases civilians place military-like jackets in the co-driver seat and bulldoze every road user including traffic police officers.
“If you’re still wearing army-like uniforms, we want to warn you that the operation has resumed and if you are found you will be arrested and charged. We urge whoever has them to stop wearing them. Take them to the nearby police station,” Onyango said.
Onyango and Akiiki warn that civilians regardless of their social status should not be tempted to wear attires preserved for the forces.
“If you are not an army officer don’t wear the attires. Army and police attires are not for civilians. Please don’t say you’re a star, a celebrity that you have a right to wear them. We will arrest you,” Onyango said.