Police have issued security guidelines ahead of festive season celebrations. Below is a statement from Police Spokesman, SSP Emilian Kayima.
It is important to note that as the festive season sets in, there are many activities, a lot of movements and merry making that often attract the attention of criminals that pounce on their targeted victims thereby causing damage, death and destruction.
In the same vein, the roads especially the highways are busy with drivers that are tempted to drive beyond the acceptable speed limits with motor vehicles that are probably not in good mechanical conditions and with inexperienced drivers. As a result, accidents are registered, lives lost and pain inflicted beyond the victims.
This is therefore to give guidelines for the festive season to guarantee security and safety before, during and after the festive season.
- SAFETY ON THE WATERS
We all recall the boat cruise tragedy of November 24th, 2018 in which 32 lives were lost and a total of 37 survivors registered and 5 are unaccounted for yet. Some properties were recovered and the investigation teams are handling these to establish whether these are part of the survivors or the dead. These include among others: Fuel cards, shopping cards, driving permits, ATM cards and National IDS and mobile phones. Names for some of these items include: Stella Byabashaija Ntanda (Bag shopping cards, driving permit, National ID and Fuel Card), Nantege Yudaya (Bag and National ID), Doreen Arinaitwe (Bag and National ID), Samalie Nakakazi (Bag, Driving Permit and National ID, ULS Card), Stella Nabasa (Bag and Driving permit) and Namayanja Bag and Driving permit). There is also Lindah Nankungu (Bag, Driving permit), Mariam Nakigudde Bag and Bank ATM Card), Irene Alitubeera (Bag and National ID), Zahura Paul Apuuli (National ID), Barbra Kabagambe(Driving pemit) and Martha Kawalya (Bag, Driving permit and National ID).
In total we recovered 27 hand bags, 9 chairs, I generator and I speaker, 7 mobile phones, 12 National IDS, 4 pair of male shoes, 3 pairs of shoes for ladies and an assortment of clothes. Money recovered was UGX. 500,000= and some has already been claimed by the right owners.
The wreckage was pulled to the shore on Saturday and the operation has been called off.
We applaud the different teams of experts that joined hands with the Uganda Police Force Marine Unit to address the tragedy. These include among others: UPDF, Ministry of works officials, Uganda Railways, Mango Tree Ship, divers from KK beach and the local fishermen. The local community offered us a lot of support and we don’t take it for granted. In particular, we applaud the big heart of the late Bosco Owecho, a local fisherman from BUZINDERE Island who died while rescuing those trapped in the boat cruse tragedy. Equally, we thank Hajji Yusuf Matovu (YOUMA) that took care of all the teams that were involved in the rescue mission. We are very grateful for the generosity.
By the time we called off the operation, we did not have any hopes of recovering any more lives or retrieving any more bodies. However, in case of any other reports, we are open to receive them and act on them accordingly.
The Uganda Police Force Marine Unit are in the process of carrying out massive operations together with the ministry of Transport to inspect all boats and vessels on our water bodies to ensure their worthiness in avoidance of endangering lives as it was recently. They have already started with the life saving equipment like life jackets for passenger boats.
We need to recall that in 2015, many swimmers and revelers drowned in Lake Victoria in Kigungu Entebbe and measures were given which still stand. These include among others: Not allowing swimmers without professional guides and life savers in close proximity, No swimming beyond 6:00pm, No swimming while drunk and keeping security in the know for all activities of this nature.
As the festive season draws near, many people especially the holiday makers might want to go swimming.
We advise parents and care givers to always guide children under their care to take these precautions, keeping in mind that security and safety starts with you. It is a sign of irresponsibility to leave your personal security and safety entirely in the hands of security agencies without you having interest and taking steps in that direction.
- All Beach owners must make sure that their beaches are secured from any unwanted persons by fencing it to have access control which is easy to enforce. This will make it easier for security to secure revelers who are at the beach.
- Beach owners must make sure that they have a standby life savers’ team at the beach to monitor what is going on and in case of anything they can act immediately.
- All beaches must have well lit environments to deter crimes that are propagated by darkness.
- Revelers should NOT be allowed to enter the water after 6pm, any beach owner who allows revelers to enter the water after 6pm action will be taken against such beaches.
- Revelers who have taken alcoholic must NOT be allowed to enter in the waters.
- All beach owners to have a register where all revelers that are planning to swim are registered to know the number of people that have entered the water and those that have successfully come out of the lake safely.
- For boat cruise, timings of the boat, the time that the boat should leave a particular beach should be clearly known to the authorities including the Police Marine Unit.
- Regional Police Commanders and District Police Commanders whose jurisdiction have beaches must work with local authorities to see that these guidelines are adhered to strictly.
(b) SAFETY AND SECURITY ON THE HIGH WAY
Motorists and other road users have to take extra care to ensure safety and security of persons and goods along the high ways this festive season. First, all motorists must have their vehicles in good mechanical conditions, have valid driving permits and avoid drink driving, over speeding. They must respect traffic regulations and abide by the guidelines given by the traffic officers on the roads and high ways.
The Directorate of Traffic and Road Safety will intensify traffic operations with a view of ensuring that we minimize road accidents. As a result, Fika Salaam operations will be intensified along the highways to deliver safety on the roads.
All motorists must pay their EPS tickets quickly to avoid being apprehended. Once found with unpaid tickets, vehicles will be parked to demand that you first pay before you proceed. And it is simple to know whether your vehicle has paid the EPS tickets by simply doing the following using your mobile phone facility: Go to messages, type EPS (leave space) type vehicle number and send to 8888. Riders must avoid pillion riding, flouting traffic lights and use of more lights on their bikes that are a cause of accidents. They should abide by the laws that govern all motorists.
The traffic police on top of using Fika salama to ensure safety on the roads will continuously and vigorously carry out operations to ensure that vehicles that are road worth are the only ones on the roads. They will equally employ breath analyzers for the drink drive operations, use permit readers to ensure all drivers are authorized by law to drive and speed guns to make sure that all motorists comply with the acceptable speed limits in different areas.
(c) GENERAL SECURITY GUIDELINES
In general terms, all of us have to take precautions to address our local security concerns like terror attacks, cross boarder organized crimes and well as thefts, burglaries, house breaking and economic crimes like frauds. Crime tends to rise during festive seasons like these which calls for vigilance, closely working with security agencies to address these matters to ensure total peace and security.
Parents must take care of their children and families; brief them on the existing dangers including possible kidnaps, sexual abuse and murders. These holidays tend to give a lot of liberty to children and this can cause them trouble.
Vigilance on the part of the community is paramount. Working hand in hand with security is equally important.
Use of the police counter phones provided will enhance security and increase our response time.
Equally, use of CCTV cameras, trained dogs and trusted guards for business premises and homes that can afford them is very important.