Police have backtracked on its officer who shot and killed Uttam Bhandari Saremal, the Director of TFS Financial Services.
According to police spokesperson, Fred Enanga, the actions of its officer Ivan Wabwire were deliberate, planned and premeditated. Prior to the murder the suspect while in civilian clothes met with Bhandari, to establish his loan status and further discuss plans on how to trade it off, for a salary loan at Stanbic Bank, William Street Branch.
Enanga said the suspect acquired an initial loan from TFS Financial Services on August 5, 2020 of Shs million with an interest of Shs 320,000 after 12 months. On May 5, 2021, he acquired a second loan of Shs 1 million but defaulted on the loan. He was not convinced by the outstanding loan quotation.
The following day of May 12, 2023, the suspect in his full uniform, picked an SMG Rifle with 4 magazines that had been left in the room by PC Stephen Muromba, left his beat at CPS and went straight to meet the Director TFS Financial Services. While at their offices at Raja Chambers along Parliament Avenue, he signed in the visitor’s book, and went straight to meet Uttam Bhandari.
He maintained a standing position with his hand on the gun, had a short verbal exchange with the Director, and immediately after fired several shots at the victim. He then moved out briefly and returned to the scene to pick his loan documents. He fired more bullets at the victim, when he found him still holding his breath, and killed him. His target was the victim and no one else. Out of 12 bullets that were fired, nine of them fatally wounded the victim
“After the deadly shooting the suspect confidently moved out, jumped on a boda boda that dropped him at CPS Kampala. He returned the gun and asked a colleague to watch over it and disappeared,”he said.
The officer escaped to his village at Bwalila, Bumango Parish, Masinya subcounty, in Busia district. He was arrested on May 14, 2023 at Uganda customs, while trying to cross into Kenya.
“The suspect was sound and in very good shape and was transferred to Kampala Metropolitan Police Headquarters, where he was examined by a medical doctor who established him to be normal and sound. Upon interrogation, the officer had no remorse and admitted to having murdered the victim, for allegedly cheating him,” he said.
Enanga said the tragic murder could have been avoided if the owner of the killer weapon, PC Stephen Muromba, had not left it unattended in their shared room. As our force policy on use of firearms demands, he should have returned the gun to the Armory, before moving out of the station. He instead, without lawful permission sneaked out of the station to attend to a personal matter, which is an outright case of gross indiscipline and negligence.
He said Murombo was charged and dismissed from the force. He will further appear in the criminal court on charges of neglect of duty. The victim paid the price for his negligence with his life. His immediate supervisors also face disciplinary sanctions, for poor supervision taken to criminal court for negligence.