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Proposed Deployment of LDUs Draws Mixed Reactions from City Residents

John Bosco Karwanyi also a Boda boda rider and resident of Kifumbira zone in Kamwokya, says the LDUs should be deployed in rural areas with limited police posts and stations.

Audio 6

There are mixed reactions among city dwellers on the proposal by President, Yoweri Museveni to deploy 24,000 Local Defense Unit-LDU personnel in Kampala and Wakiso districts to combat the increasing cases of crime.

In his nation address on Sunday evening, President, Museveni, said the security committee chaired by him had resolved to deploy LDUs to combat urban crime. Museveni explained that the team would be comprised of personnel from the reserve force and crime preventers and would cost the country Shillings 57 billion.

He explained that the LDUs would be armed to supplement the work of police to combat urban crime. URN spoke to selected city residents on the proposed deployment of the LDUs. 50-year-old Godfrey Bagonza, a boda boda rider welcomed the idea, saying it will help to reduce the crime rates around the city. 

He however cautioned against recruiting non-natives or new residents whose background may not be known. He called for the involvement of Local council officials in the recruitment of the LDUs since they are closer and have a better understanding of their subjects.

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He also suggested that the recruitment of the LDUs should be restricted to people between 35 and 50 years, saying young people can easily divert from their mission and turn their firearms against the people they are supposed to protect.

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John Bosco Karwanyi also a Boda boda rider and resident of Kifumbira zone in Kamwokya, says the LDUs should be deployed in rural areas with limited police posts and stations.

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Moris Bisendowun, a guard with Senaca Security believes the reintroduction of LDUs will help to reduce crime rate in urban areas.  He says the LDUs will increase the manpower needed to put down chaos that often occurs in urban centers.

Bisendowun argues that there is no reason why Ugandans should be killed by thugs yet they can be protected.

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Ronald Ssegaluma, the LC 1 Chairman Upper Mawanda Road in Mulago 1 Parish in Kawempe Division, says reinstating LDUs will not resolve the security question in the country. 

He wondered what the ill trained LDUs will do where well trained and equipped personnel from Police and UPDF have failed. Ssegaluma warned that the reinstatement of LDUs could instead accelerate crime if they choose to misuse the firearms in their possession.

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Ssegaluma advises government to work with elected local security groups and motivate them to provide security in their respective areas.

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