Police Spokesperson Fred Enanga has identified the arrested suspects as Vuma Rodgers and Somon Ocugi. Vuma, according to Enanga, is the agent for China-Uganda –Congo company while Ocugi has been storing the victims in Star Guest House at Makerere for days before smuggling them into DRC.
At least two men are behind bars after they were
arrested over the weekend by Crime Intelligence operatives on charges of
selling Ugandans to Chinese Gold miners in The Democratic Republic of Congo –DRC.
Police Spokesperson Fred Enanga has identified the
arrested suspects as Vuma Rodgers and Somon Ocugi. Vuma, according to Enanga, has
been the agent for China-Uganda –Congo, a company that has branches in
Muku village in Eastern DRC while Ocugu, is the manager of Star Guest House in
Makerere 1 Parish where victims would be kept for days before being smuggled
It all started after CI headed by, Brig Chris Damulira,
was tipped off during the course of hunting for suspected agents and recruiters
of terror cells that a number of women and men were being trafficked to DRC under dubious destination.
Security decided to trace the group and it was established that there is a Chinese-owned gold mining
company which has for several months been trafficking Ugandans to DRC to work
as slaves in the gold mines.
Enanga explained that intelligence report received by
CI indicates that China-Uganda –DRC gold company is headed by a Chinese
national known as Mr Liu while a one Eriab Naturinda, acts as the legal
officers and has been processing passports for the victims.
“We have established from
intelligence that while in DRC the victims are taken to dig gold using
rudimentary tools under very degrading conditions in exchange for millions paid
to their traffickers, we are tracking down the Chinese owner Mr Liu who has gone into hiding,” Enanga
CI has since established
that Vuma has been traversing various parts of the country hoodwinking
unsuspecting women and youths that there are lucrative jobs in DRC particularly
in gold mines. Vuma would after be paid millions of money for every person trafficked
using the borders points of Kanungu and Kasese and delivered as a slave in the mines.
At the time of arrest,
Vuma had duped seven women who were being hidden in Star Guest House. Police have
identified the rescued women as Kugonza Mildred 37 years old from Bullisa
district, Nakayemba Resty 23 years from Kabimbiri village in Kayunga and Nabirye
Annet 28 years from Makindye.
Other survivors rescued are Ndiwakogi Sylvia 29 years from Namugongo, Akituyi Loyce 29 years from
Buloba, Kyomugisha Beatrice 31 years from Mpaija village in Hoima and Nakawuki
Aisha 21 from Nansana Municipality, Wakiso district.
Investigations Directorate (CID) has summoned lawyer Naturinda Eriab who has
been allegedly beating systems to process passports for victims who get held incommunicado before they are successfully trafficked into slavery in the mines.
Security has once again reminded Ugandans to always crosscheck with ministry of gender, labour and
social development to determine genuine labour export agencies.
Joseph Kato is currently a Master's candidate at Makerere University. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communication from Kampala International University, a Diploma in Journalism and he's also a graduate in Guidance and Counseling.