Murder of two Muslim clerics in Uganda linked to Congo rebel group

World Today

Authorities in Uganda have linked the deaths of two Muslim clerics to a regional rebel group based in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo. 

CCTV Africa reporter Leon Ssenyange reported this story from Kampala, Uganda.

Murder of two Muslim clerics in Uganda linked to Congo rebel group

Authorities in Uganda have linked the deaths of two Muslim clerics to a regional rebel group based in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo.

Hundreds attended the funeral of Muslim leader, Mustafa Bahiga, who was shot three times by unknown attackers as he traveled to a mosque 15 miles from the Ugandan capital of Kampala.

“The way he was gunned down is the same way many other sheikhs were gunned down… so we don’t know exactly who is behind that,” Hassan Kirya, a Kampala emir said.

Bahiga was the second Muslim cleric to be killed in less than five days. The first died on Christmas day in the eastern part of the country.

Local authorities here have linked their deaths to the Allied Democratic Front, a Ugandan-led Islamist rebel group, active in the eastern Congo.

“There is a pattern from the way the doctor was killed in Mayuge, and now this… there is a pattern and this pattern links to ADF. I don’t want to make a conclusion, but certainly it’s organized,” Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura said.

Similar killings have been reported in neighboring Kenya where three Muslim clerics were shot dead this year in the coastal town of Mombasa.

“We are living in a time of terrorism let nobody suggest this is something momentous… what has happened is unfortunate and puts a lot of responsibility on us to do more to secure the country,” Kayihura said.

Overall, 15 people have been arrested in connection with the killings.

Local police say they are committed to solving the growing list of murder cases, however religious leaders said more needs to be done to protect them, as they have now become easy targets.