Kampala Metropolitan Deputy Police Spokesperson Luke Owoyesigyirehas identified the suspects as Francis Luke and Joshua Bakabuye, both residents of Kawempe. Their arrest came after a woman who was travelling abroad questioned how they were able to give her results without conducting a test.
Police in Kampala has arrested two people suspected
to be part of a racket issuing fake COVID-19 test results, to travellers.
Kampala Metropolitan Deputy Police Spokesperson Luke
identified the suspects as Francis Luke and Joshua Bakabuye, both residents
of Kawempe. Their arrest came after a woman who was travelling abroad questioned how they were able to give her results without conducting a test.
The woman who had been asked to pay 150,000 Shillings for the test, was alarmed that even without a test, she was given Negative COVID-19 results on a headed paper of Meya Clinic. But after she raised concerns about the authenticity of the results, Meya Clinic staff noticed that her name was not recorded in their system on the said date.
This prompted the staff to inquire how she had got
the paper results. She told them that someone who described himself as a Meya
Clinic staff approached her and promised to take her samples for testing at a
cost of 150,000.
“I paid and I waited for him to draw my samples but he
did not. He instead brought me negative results. That is why I have come here to
find out,” she reportedly said. Luckily, the man who
had picked money from the woman had left behind his telephone digits.
In the aftermath, the clinic alerted police about a racket using its name to falsify COVID-19 results. Police asked the woman to call the culprit
pretending that she had got someone who urgently needed results, leading to the arrest of Joshua Bakabuye who later implicated Francis Lule as his boss.
“I am not the owner of the clinic. I am just a
distributor of results. Arrest my boss. I just get a commission,” Bakabuye told
police in his statement, before leading the police to Lule's residence.
Owoyesigyire said some exhibits that include
headed papers of clinics in Kampala have been confiscated. The books confiscated from Lule’s home show in the
last few days, 20 people had been issued with results at a cost of 150,000 Shillings each.
//Cue in; “it should…
However, police have since learnt that many
of the people who got the results have already flown out of the country. Police added that
they sent a team to Entebbe Airport with a copy of false results picked from
the suspects’ homes and to their surprise, the systems read them as genuine.
Joseph Kato is currently a Master's candidate at Makerere University. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communication from Kampala International University, a Diploma in Journalism and he's also a graduate in Guidance and Counseling.