Was his death a work-related matter?
Was he killed by ADF rebels who, according to police chief Gen Kale Kayihura, have been gunning down Muslim clerics? Could his death be tied to a domestic or private issue?
These are some of the questions that beg answers, three days after police spokesperson, Andrew Felix Kaweesi, was gunned down near his home in Kulambiro.
By the time we went to press, police investigators were still poring over information gathered from the scene of the fatal shooting for clues to who the killers could be. They talked to witnesses, checked the car and other objects for fingerprints and took photographs of the crime scene.
By Friday evening, they had also come up with sketch drawing of two people, suspected to have been behind the killings. Kaweesi, an assistant inspector general of police, is the first high-ranking police officer to be gunned down since President Museveni came to power in 1986.
He also becames the 12th prominent person to be killed by assailants riding on boda bodas in the last five years. The first was Sheikh Abdul Karim Ssentamu who was killed by boda boda-riding assailants in April 2012 when he was leaving a mosque. Others include Hajj Abubaker Kiweewa (June 2012); Sheikh Abdu Jawali Sentunga (August 2012); Sheikh Yunus Abubaker Mudungu (August 2012) and Sheikh Dr Abdul Kadhir Muwaya (December 2014).
Others are: Sheikh Mustapha Bahiiga (December 2014); Sheikh Ismail Ssebugwawo (January 2015); Joan Kagezi (March 2015) Abdul Rashid Wafula (May 2015) Sheikh Ibrahim Hassan Kirya (June 2015)-T and Major Muhammed Kiggundu (November 2016).
Like Kaweesi, at least three of these clerics were gunned down on a Friday, creating a pattern that could interest investigators. The Observer has learnt that prior to his shooting, Kaweesi had received several calls from people he didn’t know, threatening to kill him.
“After one week when we returned from the [recent] Kigali police chiefs meeting, Kaweesi told me that some people whom he did not know called and threatened to kill him,” said a high-ranking Criminal Investigations directorate (CID) officer close to Kaweesi.
He said Kaweesi did not take the threats seriously because in his line of duty, he had gotten used to receiving death threats.
Kaweesi once reportedly told our source: “When I was still at KMP [Kampala Metropolitan Police], a woman came to my office and told me to increase my security because some people had planned to kill me.”
John Ndugutse, the director in charge of counter terrorism, said Kaweesi’s killers are highly trained and knew his movements for some time.
“These people who killed Kaweesi were not mere armed robbers. They are highly trained, have military experience and could have trailed him for some good time,” Ndugutse said. He said that since security has now understood their style of execution, they will hunt for them.
Gen Kayihura said a joint security team has been formed to investigate the murder of Kaweesi. The police chief said the team, comprising more than 20 experienced investigators from police, Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence, Special Forces Command and Internal Security Organization will be headed by Grace Akullo, the director of Criminal Investigations.
“We must use people who have got military experience because the killers also have military skills,” said Kayihura.
Kayihura said the team will hand over the report to him, after which he will brief the president.