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Security to Intensify Patrols on Water Bodies to Reduce Human Trafficking

Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Jeje Odongo, said Uganda has over 300 porous border points including water bodies where security needs to be heightened. Odongo said security will increase operations on water bodies including ungazzetted land entry points.
Boat donated by IOM and Japan

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The government through its security agencies will intensify water and land border patrols in a bid to curtail human trafficking and illegal entry.

Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Jeje Odongo, said Uganda has over 300 porous border points including water bodies where security needs to be heightened. Odongo said security will increase operations on water bodies including ungazzetted land entry points.

“Enhancing border management for the security and development of the country is a high priority. We therefore look to enhancing control of our borders which include 2698km and this takes lakes, whereas we have 54 gazetted crossing points, we have 336 ungazzetted crossing points,” said Odongo.

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Odongo made the remarks today at the handing over of cars and boats by the government of Japan purposely to reduce transnational security threats while increasing border security and regular migration in Uganda.

The 2019 annual police crime report show 455 people were trafficked. Of these 71 were victims of internal trafficking mostly female juveniles, while 384 people were victims of transnational trafficking. That was a drop in trafficking numbers compared to figures of 2018 which stood at 650.

Japan’s deputy ambassador to Uganda, Muzumoto Horii, reminded Ugandan security commanders that buying and lobbying for equipment is not enough to fight cross border crime. Muzumoto said there is need to conduct regular training of all security personnel at border points.

“Limited access to equipment such as boats and vehicles was one of the impediments on securing borders. I will emphasize that good border maintenance will not be realized by procured equipment. You need to train security officers,” said Muzumoto.

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Sanusi Tejan Savage, the Chief of Mission at International Organization for Migration (IOM) revealed that they will be conducting trainings for migration officers and security personnel in order to fasten cross border security.  

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