In Summary
  • Cases of kidnaps are on the rise in the country.
  • The most recent case was of Suzan Magara, who was kidnapped in January this year and later killed 21 days later by the suspects despite her family paying Shs700m ransom.

Kampala. The body of a woman, who was allegedly kidnapped for ransom on Friday night, has been found with marks of strangulation and sexual abuse in Kabaawo zone in Mutundwe, Rubaga Division in Kampala.
The body of Charity Kyohirwe, 32, a resident of Masajja Parish in Makindye Division, Kampala, was found by residents on Saturday at about 9am.

The Kampala Metropolitan Police deputy spokesperson, Mr Luke Owoyesigire, said the suspected kidnappers had demanded Shs5m from the deceased’s relatives to release her, which they did not readily have that night.

Cause of death
“The deceased is suspected to have been strangled to death. We aren’t sure whether the killing happened before or after demanding the money. The pathologists will be able to establish the day she was killed to help us understand what happened first. We are yet to receive the postmortem report,” Mr Owoyesigire said yesterday.

Kyohirwe has been running a restaurant in Masajja on Entebbe Road.
Detectives are also puzzled why she was targeted since she was not wealthy or from well-to-do family. Kidnappers often target people from well-to-do families to be able to get large sum of ransom.
The time of her death will be able to tell the detectives whether it was a kidnap-for-ransom crime or the criminals just wanted to use the opportunity of stealing her mobile phone to extort money from her relatives long after they had killed her.

According to police, Kyohirwe was kidnapped on Friday night at an unknown place, but they suspect it was near Mutundwe since she often goes there for night prayers.
The suspects allegedly used her mobile phone and called her relatives, demanding a ransom of Shs5m.
A police investigator involved in the case said the relatives pleaded with the kidnappers to lower the amount of the ransom and they agreed to reduce it to Shs3m.

Warned
The kidnappers also warned the relatives that if they inform the police, they will kill the victim.
However, the relatives informed Katwe Police Station that they started tracking the suspects.
The kidnappers killed her and dumped the body in a banana plantation in Mutundwe, a city suburb.

It is not yet clear whether the relatives were able to send the ransom to the suspects or not.
A police source said the relatives sent the money, but Mr Owoyesigire denied it.
“Detectives suspect that criminals could have used that opportunity to make money. We don’t know whether they demanded the ransom after killing her or not. The postmortem will be able to guide us on the time she died for us to establish that,” he said.
The deceased’s phone has since been switched off.
abagala@ug.nationmedia.com