Brenda Atukwase is one of the many unlucky women and men who have lost millions of money to former Jinja City North Division mayoral aspirant known as Ronald Wambuzi, who seems to have mastered numerous tricks to fool Ugandans into fake get-rich-quicker games.
In an exclusive interview with our reporter on Friday afternoon, a one Brenda dealing in agent banking and mobile money business around Ntinda, a Kampala suburb narrated her sad story on how she lost over shs45 million to Ronald Wambuzi, aka Godon Muzeei, aka Owundo David among other names as he keeps changing identities like any other thug in the scamming business.
According to Brenda and several other women who are currently leaving in fear for their lives, Wambuzi uses love and sex stunts to con them by lying to those lovers-of-convenience to give him money to invest temporarily and give them back the money with massive profits.
To some victims, Wambuzi convinces them that their money would be used to purchase the chemicals used to print the more money noting that he would double their initial deposits.
For Brenda’s case, Wambuzi came as a customer in November 2022, and later became friends before they started dating until the fateful day of 3, February 2023, when he called her to go to his home at Comfort Suites located in Ntinda, Ministers village to pick some money to take to the bank.
On getting to his gate apartment, which is remotely controlled, at around 2pm, Brenda had shs45 million in her bag which she was supposed to take to the bank as well but she was allegedly attacked and drugged between the stairs while moving up to his room and gained conscious hours later only to find her bag which had the said money, empty!.
Brenda further revealed to our reporter that after gaining conscious, she found herself in a room full of chemicals and fake money. She hurriedly reached to her bag to get her phone for communication but it was turned off. Brenda turned on her phone and luckily her brother who was among the many people looking for her at that moment called to know about her whereabouts since she had disappeared for some hours from her workplace moreover with huge sums of money.
While she was still talking to her brother and her boss who were desperately looking for her, they asked her to send them a pin to show her location but someone came out of the bathroom and hit her on the head and she lost conscious again before sending the pin.
Later that night after failing to get her location, her brother, bosses and her other workmates who had gathered decided to review the nearest CCTV footage which revealed that Brenda was picked by Boda Boda rider from the nearby stage whom they traced to help them locate where he had dropped her-comfort suites.
On getting to the location with the help of Ntinda police, Wambuzi and his accomplices had disappeared in thin air but Brenda was picked and taken to the hospital and later recorded a case at Kira road police station.
According to Brenda, on top of swindling money from his female victims, he also allegedly abuses them sexually and threatens to release their nudes when they finally discover his schemes and try to pursue justice.
While Brenda was still recovering from the shock of her life, she later learnt that Wambuzi had been arrested by CMI squad for allegedly defrauding over shs40 million in a similar manner and detained at Central police station from where she was called to identify him and confirm if he was the one.
Around May 2023, Wambuzi appeared before Grade One Magistrate Edgar Kakaire and was charged with three counts of theft and remanded to Luzira Prison.
Meanwhile Brenda and other victims including; Sarah who lost (shs25 million), Jamil (shs46 million and later shs65 million), Enid (shs25 million) all dealers in agent banking business are seeking justice to at least recover their monies from Wambuzi whom they say has been arrested and released on several occasions after allegedly bringing authorities.
Amidst tears, fears and embarrassment, Brenda noted that all the money swindled from them by Wambuzi is borrowed to them as float to use and always refunded within hours, something that has left her and her colleagues stranded.
Previous Similar Cases Against Wambuzi
In July 2022, Wambuzi was reported to Kabalagala Police Station for allegedly obtaining money by false pretense in a fake dollar scam from a one Fredrick Makhoha, who owns a company that distributes money in form of float to bank agents in various parts of the city.
It is said that on the fateful day on June,26, 2022, when the company distributed the float as was the routine, they sent one Allan Matovu, an employee to pick the money that had been distributed but he never returned.
“Matovu never reported back to the company after collecting shs300 million from the bank agents. A case of disappearance with company money was lodged at Kabalagala Police Station. He was arrested after four days of tracking.” On arrest, Matovu told detectives that he had shortage in the money collected and that the money had been given to Wambuzi who promised to sell him a black dollar that would later turn genuine.
“He said he met Wambuzi at Ntinda Comfort Suit and gave him shs145 million in exchange for the fake dollar but he disappeared in thin air. Matovu was found with shs19 million.”
According to police, armed with phone printouts indicating the two had ever called and met with each other, the search for the former mayoral aspirant for Jinja begun until he reported himself to police.
Kampala Metropolitan deputy police spokesperson, Luke Owoyesigyire confirmed the development, noting that Wambuzi handed over himself to police.
“Many victims have come up to report cases against Wambuzi to Kira road police station. These identify him with the physical appearance since he allegedly uses different names. Investigations into the allegations have kicked off and we shall be updating the public about the same,” Owoyesigyire said at the time.
In August 2022, the same Wambuzi obtained over 180 million from a one Grace Mukasa who operated a money dealership in Kansanga known as Aster Finance at the time which belonged to Fred Makokha and his spouse Josephine Makokha. So, the money wasn’t for Mukasa. It belonged to the couple. The victim simply got the working capital. And generously handed the same to the swindler to swindle.
At the same time, Ntinda police officer in charge, Moses Wegulo confirmed cases of Wambuzi baiting women with love before conning them after a one Jackline Kasana, a mobile money dealer reported that Wambuzi first hooked her up. He then started showering her with UGX100,000 daily to spend on buying lunch. After sometime, he started borrowing money from her. He was lying to her that he was investing the borrowed money into the printing of money and that he was going to return the debts with profits before he disappeared from Jackie without a trace.
She had lent to Wambuzi a cool UGX17m. She opened a police case at Ntinda Police under case SD:63/02/07/2022.
Going back to the UGX180m heist, after Wambuzi got the money from Mukasa at his home in Ntinda on June 27, 2022, he put himself completely out of the victim’s reach.
The matter would finally leak after the victim went to the Internal Affairs Ministry. He had gone there to process an express passport. He wanted to use the passport to leave Uganda for Canada. He had simply found himself with totally no explanation to give to the bosses. He was arrested by operatives from CMI on July 7, 2022, right there at the internal affairs ministry.
It’s at this point in time that he would reveal whatever had happened and whatever he was up to. The operatives went down to work shortly after they had been briefed by Mukasa. Their investigations led to Wambuzi’s hotel known as Basoga Nseete in Mukono. The operators found Wambuzi’s employees inside the hotel. One was a female and another was a male, only identified as Bunjo.
The operation was fruitful. The operators harvested chemicals used for `printing` money. They also recovered an improvised printer for fake money, there in the hotel. The two employees were apprehended and deposited at Kabalagala Police for safety custody. Now, this is how Wambuzi himself fell into the trap. After getting wind of the operation plus the seizure of his chemicals and the printer, he dashed to Kabalagala.
He had gone there to try to rescue his people and the illegal items for making money. The CMI operatives got to know of his presence. So, they quickly grabbed him. They took his statement. And forwarded him to Makindye Grade One Magistrates’ Court. The court, after reading the charges to Wambuzi, of being found in illegal possession of equally illegally fake things for making money and those of obtaining money by false pretenses, hurled him to Kitalya Prison.
The court file containing the charges is listed as number SD:142/27/06/2022. He returned to court on August 8,2022 and was released on bail and embarked on his games to defraud from unsuspecting victims including Brenda. We shall Keep you updated!