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Security Personnel in Kitgum Intensify Crackdown on People Flouting Covid-19 SOPs

William Komakech, Kitgum Resident District Commissioner noted during a weekly task force meeting on Thursday that the operation seeks to restore compliance to SOPs in order to curb the spread of covid-19.
17 Jun 2021 16:11
A pupil wearing a face mask in class in Labongo Amida Subcounty in Kitgum District.
Security personnel in Kitgum Municipality have intensified crackdown on people not wearing masks in the public.

This followed concerns from the covid-19 taskforce committee over low compliance to Standard Operating Procedures among the populace in the wake of the second wave of Covid-19.

William Komakech, Kitgum Resident District Commissioner noted during a weekly task force meeting on Thursday that the operation seeks to restore compliance to SOPs to curb the spread of covid-19.

According to Komkaech, over 50 people were arrested on Tuesday and briefly detained for failing to wear face masks in the public in an impromptu operation conducted within Central Division.

The operation was conducted jointly by the police and Municipal law enforcement officials.

Komakech says offenders were shamed by being subjected to long walks with law enforcement officers before their release with serious caution.

He notes that the same operation will be extended to Sub-counties where there has been reported negligence by the community to wear face masks.

Kitgum District has had a sharp rise in covid-19 community infections in the past four days.

According to statistics from the District Surveillance Focal Point Person, Simon Knox Okongo, at least 23 people tested positive for covid-19 following a test conducted between Monday and Wednesday.

He notes that at least 80 primary contacts to the patients were listed out of which 43 were followed and tested.

Okongo says the surveillance team have now mapped Pandwong Division within Kitgum Municipality as a covid-19 hotspot accounting for 60 percent of the new infection cases. He says one patient out of the 23 new cases is in serious condition but undergoing home-based care in Nyanya cell in Pager Division.

Dr Geoffrey Okello, the acting medical superintendent at Kitgum General Hospital also head of case management in the district says they have equipped the treatment centre to handle emergency covid-19 cases. Dr Okello says the facility has been equipped with 20 beds and an emergency oxygen cylinder to handle cases that need urgent medical attention before referrals to the regional treatment centre in Gulu city.

He however says despite the surging community cases in the district, the health workers are having challenges with the inadequate supply of personal protective equipment which is affecting swab sample collection for testing.

“Today we are not likely going to remove samples because the little PPE we had was used,” Dr Okello said.

The District health department ran out of stock of PPE that includes sterile examination gloves, aprons, eye goggles, face shields among others about a week ago and has been borrowing from neighbouring districts.

The District has registered three covid-19 deaths since March last year. A total of 304 people have tested positive to covid-19 in the district out of 2,197 tests conducted.    

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