The Inspector General of Police, Emmanuel Gasana, yesterday said that all suspects who are arrested are tried by the courts of law before being imprisoned or released, depending on the rulings.
He made the remarks during a town hall meeting to discuss the current security level in the country. The meeting was broadcast live on public radio and television.
“Whenever someone is arrested for alleged crimes, we forward them to the court for trial. They are then charged or released in accordance with the law.”
The Police Chief was responding to two callers who complained that suspects are released soon after arrests, yet they still pose security threats.
One of the callers identified as Damacene from Kirehe district gave an example; “There is a notorious thief in my area that was recently arrested in possession of marijuana and released soon after, yet there was all evidence to punish him.”
Another issue raised were claims that those who forward criminals to Police are required to feed them in the event that they are arrested.
However, the Commissioner for CID, Christopher Bizimungu, clarified that those who are arrested are taken care of by the state.
“There is no obligation to visit the arrested suspects because they are in the hands of the government,” Bizimungu said.
“When such people get sick, we (Police) are the ones who get them hospitalised before proceeding with their trial.”
The CID boss, however, promised to further look into the matter and address any specific complaints, should they exist.
On the case of terror suspects, Gasana gave an update.
“…. the people we arrested in 2010 for planting grenades are imprisoned. For some, we had tangible evidence as they confessed their crimes, and others are still in trial,” he said.
“Investigations concerning the people they worked with are also ongoing.”
The Police boss pointed out that generally, there is security in the country, however, there are minor criminal cases that have to be dealt with if the Force is to achieve its vision of “a crime-free state”.