The same suspect was arrested in 2018 for allegedly stealing a cow in his district
The Police in the Kapelebyong district has arrested a Uganda People's Defence Forces (UPDF) deserter for allegedly harassing civilians in the pretense of enforcing the presidential directives on COVID-19.
Julius Aguma alias Kavuma, a resident of Odiding Village in Kapelebyong Town Council who was dressed on a military uniform, was arrested on Tuesday.
Police confirmed on Wednesday morning that Aguma, a private number RA 203039 was formerly attached to Loputuk Army Detach in Moroto district.
Romeo Onek, the Kapelebyong District Police Commander, said the the Police found him harassing people at a drinking joint and telling them that he is attached to a team sent from Kampala to monitor how the directives are being handled in the district.
"When I heard the information, I said no, we don't have such a team. So, I sent my officers to bring him to the Central Police Station and he was found harassing people who were drinking Ajono (local brew)," Onek said.
According to Onek, the suspect is in Police custody waiting to be arraigned in court on charges of desertion and impersonation.
The DPC disclosed that the same suspect was arrested in 2018 for allegedly stealing a cow in his district.
He said police also got information that the Aguma was conning money from locals but nobody came forward to register such a case before Tuesday.
Onek warned people to be vigilant of such people and urged them to refrain from taking advantage of the pandemic to harass locals.
Richard Enyagu, the district councilor for Kapelebyong Town Council and sub-county, said Aguma had allegedly attempted to erect a roadblock at Odukul village along Kapelebyong-Abim road.
Enyagu said a team of six people heading to Kapelebyong Health Centre IV from Kobulin reported to him that the Aguma had extorted their money worth sh20,000 so that they could be allowed to continue their journey.
"This man has been asking people for money telling them that the government does not allow people to move anyhow. He tells you to contribute some money so that you are allowed to proceed with your journey," Enyagu said.
He said several people are suspected to have been conned of their money by the same suspect before he informed the security to act.
Enyagu said locals are unhappy that people are taking advantage of lockdown due to COVID-19 to con people.
Julian Iseet Fede, the Resident District Commissioner for Amuria and Kapelebyong said he has on several occasions warned locals against people who take advantage of the current situation to extort money from others.