Arson Survivors Flee Village As Police Fails to Find Suspects

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Survivors of the fire that claimed the lives of four family members in Nakaseke district have fled the village as Police investigations into the suspected arson attack are yet to yield fruits. On Tuesday last week, unknown assailants attacked a family at Kiziba village in Nakaseke town and burnt four people to death.  

The dead were identified as Gladys Nanyonjo, 3, Christine Nakate 4, Steven Bamulasa, 12 and their grandfather, Matia Lukwago Kabalega, 85. The deceased were buried last week. Lukwago’s widow, Justine Namagembe survived the arson attack together with her two other grandchildren.   Shortly after the funeral, the survivors left the village for fear of another arson attack. Sebastian Mpagi, the Kiziba village LC 1 Chairman, says that Namagembe has since asked for a letter recommending them to settle in another village because of the tension following last week’s attack.

Mpagi explained that Namagembe left the village on Monday this week with her grandchildren but they didn’t tell him where they were heading. According to Mpagi, he agreed to give the survivors a recommendation letter because they were still traumatized over the arson attack since the police are yet to find the key suspects who attacked the family. Earlier on Namagembe told journalists that she was living in fear that the assailants may attack her after failing to kill her in the first arson attack.

She insisted that she was the target of the arson attack because of the long outstanding wrangle with her neighbours and only survived because she was away attending a burial. Namagembe also said that all her belongings were burnt to ashes yet she didn’t have money to renovate the house.

Mpagi says police arrested three people from the village but this was based on rumours that they had an outstanding wrangle with Namagembe whom they accused of bewitching their mother to death. He says that suspects have since denied any involvement in the arson attack and dismissed allegations that Namagembe bewitched their mother, saying she died after a long illness.

Lilian Nadungu, the Treasurer for Kiziba LC 1 says that they tried settling the dispute between Namagembe and her neighbours several years ago. Nadungu says that any other person with a different motive could have organized the attack.

The Savannah Regional Police Spokesperson, Isah Ssemwogerere says that the three suspects are yet to divulge anything linking them to the fire. “We arrested three suspects but we are yet to get evidence to charge them and we are consulting the state attorney over the case,” Ssemwogerere said.   He says detectives are still looking at various leads to find the suspects behind the arson attack. A 14- year- old girl who survived the fire told Police that four men poured fuel in the house after breaking in before setting it ablaze.  

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