CHAOS AS SECURITY OPERATIVES ENFORCE MUSEVENI PUBLIC TRANSPORT BAN, CLOSE SHOPS
By Mulengera Reporters
Police in Kampala Thursday morning made attempts to implement President Yoweri Museveni’s directive on public transport as a preventive measure for the Covid-19 disease.
Hours after Uganda’s infection toll rose to 14, Museveni made his fifth Coronavirus address at State House Nakasero, temporarily halting public transport for a fortnight. (See: CORONAVIRUS: MUSEVENI BANS PUBLIC TRANSPORT FOR TWO WEEKS, ORDERS MARKETS TO SELL FOODSTUFFS ONLY).
Today, traffic and regular police officers were stationed on different roads in the city to apprehend some errant taxi drivers and bodabodas hell-bent on defying the Commander-in-Chief.
The Old Taxi Park and other parks, normally crowded, were almost empty Thursday morning, as testimony that drivers and owners of taxis had either decided to heed Museveni’s preventive measures or had found it prudent not to disobey and risk flexing muscles with enforcement officers.
In downtown Kampala, Police, military officers and Local Defence Units (LDUs) chased taxi drivers who had dared make way to parks as well as vendors and shop keepers dealing in non-food items. At Nakivubo, LDUs shot in the air to disperse vendors, shopkeepers and motorcyclists. Security officers also closed arcades and ordered traders to go home.
At Wandegeya, officers patrolled the streets to ensure no taxis were on the road. At about 9am, a taxi was towed away after police accused its occupants of daring the president.
In Ntinda and Bukoto, officers extended the operation to private cars that were carrying more than three passengers in disdain of the President’s order.
“Only private means will be allowed to move. Private cars will only be allowed to carry not more than three people, including the driver,” announced Museveni Wednesday evening.
Bodabodas are avoiding areas where police officers are stationed and have been seen carrying passengers in many suburbs of Kampala.
The ban on public transport has left people who neither own private cars nor bicycles with no option but to walk to work.
Yesterday, the Uganda’s National Security Council announced an Inter-Agency Joint Task Force (JTF) to operate at national and regional levels to support the Ministry of Health (MoH) in combating the Coronavirus epidemic in Uganda and enforcing Museveni’s preventive measures.
Comprising officers from Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF), Uganda Police Force (UPF), Uganda Prison Services (UPS), National Joint Intelligence Committee, Immigrations and Customs Units, the taskforce is headed by the military’s Deputy Chief of Defence Forces Lt Gen Wilson Mbadi.
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