Police on Tuesday made arrests of suspected killers of Joan Kagezi, the former senior State prosecutor who was gunned down in Kiwatule, Kampala, on March 30.
The arrests are commendable because when a crime is committed police are expected to do their work by arresting suspects and carrying out proper investigations to ensure suspects are prosecuted.
Now that arrests have been made, the bigger challenge is the next step. Investigations need to be thoroughly done so that the subsequent trial is carried out without hitches. This being a high profile case, all eyes are on police but in a bid to bring this case to its logical conclusion, the law must be followed. During the requiem service for Kagezi, the Inspector General of Police, Gen Kale Kayihura, said the 48-hour rule that requires police to investigate suspects and have them produced in court is not practical as it’s a short period to get evidence against suspects.
As Chief Justice Bart Katureebe rightly noted in response to Gen Kayihura, “The people who killed Joan didn’t believe in the rule of law. Those people wanted to frighten us, they wanted to make us panic. That is not necessary. Let’s not fall into their trap and pass laws which will actually run down the rule of law”
All suspects deserve a fair trial irrespective of charges against them. It is understandable that the public is increasingly getting frustrated with the growing terror acts in the country and the wider East African region. There are also cases of dangerous criminals walking away scot-free due to loopholes in the justice system.
To rid our society of criminals, security organs should work hand-in-hand with the communities because such criminals live among us. This is where community policing should come in.
Without proper investigations, innocent people could be convicted wrongly, or wrong elements can walk away scot-free. Like English jurist William Blackstone put it, “Better that 10 guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer”.
At such times, constant reminders that every Ugandan must be vigilant and help security agencies in executing their mandate are necessary. In this way, wrong elements in society are identified, isolated and rehabilitated in view of creating a safe country. We should all support law enforcement agencies to fight crime using proper legal systems. It is our duty as citizens to make Uganda a safe place.
The police will never have enough men and women in uniform to protect us all in our homes, at public places, schools, etc. But a good relationship between citizens and the police can bridge the gaps in our security numbers.
SOURCE: Daily Monitor