Jinja Police Warn Hotel Guests After String of Thefts, Arrests Made

Police in Jinja, Uganda are investigating a wave of thefts targeting hotel guests, with several arrests made, including hotel staff. Authorities are urging hotel owners to improve security measures and guests to exercise caution to prevent further incidents.

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Bijay Laxmi
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Jinja Police Warn Hotel Guests After String of Thefts, Arrests Made

Jinja Police Warn Hotel Guests After String of Thefts, Arrests Made

Police in Jinja, Uganda are urging hotel guests to exercise caution following a recent wave of thefts targeting the city's hospitality industry. Kiira Region Police Spokesperson James Mubi attributed the crimes to guests carrying large sums of money without notifying authorities, as well as hotel staff involved in the thefts.

Why this matters: The rise in thefts in Jinja's hotels has significant implications for the city's tourism industry, which is a crucial contributor to the local economy. If not addressed, these crimes could lead to a decline in tourist numbers, resulting in economic losses and job insecurity for hotel staff.

Mubi revealed that several arrests have been made in connection with the thefts, including hotel workers who are currently remanded to Kirinya Prisons. "We have done our part and provided hotels with Counter Terrorism officers to provide security, and if those officers are not enough, we have beefed up with day and night patrols," Mubi stated. He called on hotel owners to thoroughly screen their staff to prevent such incidents from occurring.

Several hotel guests have taken to social media to share their experiences of being robbed while staying at hotels in Jinja City. Patience Asaba Katushabe reported that her laptop, phones, watches, and clothes were stolen during her stay at a hotel on May 31. Music producer Vince Musisi warned, "If you don't have personal security, stay away from Jinja City."

Hotel owners in Jinja have responded to the allegations, with some dismissing the claims while others acknowledge the impact on the industry. Nile Village proprietor Harry Kasigwa called the allegations "not true," while former Lands Minister and proprietor of Source of the Nile Hotel, Daudi Migereko, recognized the problems the reported robberies are causing for hotels in the city.

A waitress at one of the hotels in Jinja, who wished to remain anonymous, suggested that the low pay of hotel staff may be a contributing factor to the thefts. "I earn a monthly salary of Shs150,000, yet I have to commute from Mbiko daily, spending Shs4,000 on transport, that means Shs120,000 is spent on transport alone, leaving me with a balance of Shs30,000; so, what do you expect?" she stated.

Fred Mugisha, a Kampala-based businessman, emphasized the need for improved security measures in hotels, noting that outsiders cannot steal from guests without the involvement of hotel staff. As the police continue their investigations and hotels work to address security concerns, guests are advised to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to safeguard their belongings during their stay in Jinja.

Key Takeaways

  • Police in Jinja, Uganda warn of thefts targeting hotel guests, citing large sums of money and hotel staff involvement.
  • Thefts threaten Jinja's tourism industry, potentially leading to economic losses and job insecurity.
  • Several arrests made, including hotel workers, with police urging hotel owners to screen staff.
  • Guests share experiences of being robbed on social media, warning others to be cautious.
  • Low pay of hotel staff may be a contributing factor to thefts, with improved security measures needed.