Christopher Barugahare, the West Nile Region Police Commander, said they won’t comprise on the President’s directive, saying the officers are under instructions to confront whoever acts to the contrary.
There was chaos in Arua town on Thursday when a
combined team of uniformed police officers and plain clothed men stormed the
streets armed with sticks to enforce the presidential ban on public transport
in a bid to curb the spread of corona virus.
Dozens of armed police officers backed by stick wielding men combed all corners of the town canning Boda
boda rider carrying passengers in disregard of the presidential ban on public
transport. The security officers also ordered the closure of
shops selling nonfood items.
Christopher Barugahare, the West Nile Region
Police Commander, said they won’t comprise on the President’s directive,
saying the officers are under instructions to confront whoever acts to the
contrary. He says the enforcement and regular patrol will be maintained until the elapse of the 14 days’ ultimatum.
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The ban on public transport has resulted in increased
transport fares in Arua town. Private vehicles carrying three persons have
increased charges from Shillings 7,000 to 25,000 from Arua to Koboko, Shillings
30,000 from 10,000 from Arua to Nebbi while those moving to Kampala from
Arua are charged Shillings 150,000 each.
However, Safi Alema Tiyo, the Chairperson Arua Boda
boda Association, says the total ban on the transportation of
people by Boda bodas may increase insecurity in homes as idle riders may
resort to theft to meet their daily needs.
“I have come to the police to sees if we can
forge a way forward because most of the Boda bodas are now idle since
there are not much goods to carry other than people,” said Alema. According to Alema, if the ban is upheld to the
fullest, it could breed more problems as many of youth used to the Boda boda
business may become poor and needy.
Several people were stranded at Arua hospital
gate as the security moved to decongest the hospital to avert the possible
spread of the corona virus. On Wednesday, Dr. Philbert Nyeko, the Director Arua
Regional Referral Hospital announced that they would start discharging patients
and only allow those in dire need of assistance with one attendant each.