Combined security agencies have arrested three heavily armed Somali nationals suspected to be Al shabaab terrorists as they headed to Kampala with a map of Namugongo shrine.
The suspects have been identified by security as Ali Award Ali, Mohammed Shiraf Ali and Yusuf Ali Mohammed all Somali nationals who had crossed into Uganda from Kenya via Migingo island on Lake Victoria.
A highly placed security source exclusively told our reporter that the suspects were also found in possession of five gun magazines, a bomb and an AK 47 all hidden in a bag. They also had a map of Namugongo shrine.
A source noted that the three last Friday entered Uganda from Kenya using a boat and landed at Migingo Island in Lake Victoria where they later used another boat to Doho Island in Mayuge district.
It is also reported that in Mayuge district they were picked by a white double cabin with no number plate
A security source also added that one of the security informers near the landing site saw the three men with a bag entering a numberless vehicle. He became suspicious and alerted the police which started trailing them.
The combined security agencies including the Special Operations Police, the Special Investigations Unit, the ISO, Flying Squad and the Special Forces Command pursued their vehicle but it disappeared upon reaching Iganga district.
The three together with their vehicle were later arrested in Jinja town on their way to Kampala where they were going to carry out attacks specifically on Namugongo shrine.
They are being held at Nalufenya polce station in Jinja.
The incident follows the release of a video on YouTube channel by Al shabaab under a title “the final message of the Kampala warrior.”
In the video, a Ugandan only identified as Kakasule is seen calling for Jihad-inspired attacks on Uganda and Burundi as well as publicly calling for independent actors to join the movement in Somalia.
Police also said that there were signals and fillers that the terrorists could be planning to strike during the Uganda Martyrs day celebrations in Namugongo, an annual event that attracts millions of believers across the globe.
However police spokesperson Fred Enanga said police and other sister security organs have increased intelligence and monitoring to avert any possible Al shabaab attack.