By Aaron Sseruyigo
KAMPALA – Pastor Umar Mulide of Gosple life church International has accused high-ranking government officials and security agencies in Uganda of sabotaging criminal investigations, saying the refusal to take full action or delay justice raises concerns about the integrity of the agencies.
On December 24, 2011 just after a Christmas Eve service at the Gospel Life Church in Namasuba, Kampala, unknown attackers threw concentrated acid into the pastor’s face and back.
Umar told Journalists that he was returning to the church for a party with his congregation, which included hundreds of new converts to Christianity, when a man who claimed to be a Christian approached him. “I heard him say in a loud voice, ‘Pastor, pastor,’ and as I made a turn and looked at him, he poured the liquid onto my face as others poured more liquid on my back and then fled away shouting, ‘Allahu akbar [God is greater].’”
Speaking at a press conference in the Capital on Wednesday, Pr Mulinde said till this day the perpetrators have not been brought to books.
“Culprits are not yet arrested, but even the file of that attempted murder case was stolen from police,” he said.
Pr Mulinde said he is unhappy with how security officials have handled his case, even after he filed it with Katwe police station in 2011.
Mulinde, who had been a sheikh (Islamic teacher) before his conversion to Christianity, used the same occasion to reveal that more assailants visited his home last week, but he survived unharmed this time.
“Regardless of the fact that I am guarded by Police, thugs succeeded to break into my house at night without being noticed. I narrowly survived, this was a close attempt on my life,” he said.
Responding to the claim,Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson Luke Owoyesigire said if any of the officers neglected their duty that time, it will be established. “What we call upon is for him to remain calm,”
Deputy Police spokesperson, SP Patrick Onyango refuted claims of Pr Mulinde’s missing case file.
“It is not that the file is lost, it is just misplaced somewhere, and we are going to get the file.”
Pr Mulinde insisted that attacks on unsuspecting victims are fronted by prominent people in government.
“It is more likely that an illegal network within key positions has been established, and the planted agents are making sure that perpetrators will never be arrested , but instead they do everything to subjugate the victims or witnesses,” Mulinde said.
In 1995, he narrowly escaped death when he was attacked by men with clubs. Another attack occurred in 2000 in Masaka; after Muslims bribed the area district commissioner to declare Mulinde’s meetings illegal, Muslims stormed into a meeting and dragged him out, beating him until he lost consciousness.
Though there have been other attacks as well, the 2011 attack has had a particularly devastating effect on his life. In the midst of the trauma, however, Mulinde shares that God has been present in significant ways.