Uganda police headquarters, CCTV command centre closed over COVID-19

Police officers face prosecution for sharing CCTV footage
The National Command and Control Center of the CCTV Cameras at Nateete Police Station aimed to beef up security surveillance within Kampala

Kampala, Uganda | URN | Uganda Police Force headquarters and the National closed-circuit television (CCTV) command centre all in Naguru have been closed because as a measure to avoid further spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The closure of police headquarters and national CCTV command centre comes a day after police’s chief political commissar, AIGP Asan Kasingye, tested positive for the virus over the weekend. Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson confirmed the closure saying it is intended to disinfect the police facilities.

“They have been temporarily closed to allow for decontamination, fumigation and testing of personnel,” said Enanga.

The CCTV command centre houses among others units the national task force commanded by Maj Gen Leopold Kyanda, traffic monitoring unit commanded by ASP Joseph Khisa, crime control unit, cyber and ICT directorate led by CP Felix Baryamwisaki.

Police headquarters’ building houses among other offices the Inspector General of Police, Martins Okoth Ochola, his deputy Maj Gen Stephen Muzeyi Sabiiti, directors, police force undersecretary and manpower audit.

Although Enanga did not reveal the number of police officers and civilians going to be tested for COVID-19, sources said national CCTV command centre has more than 200 staff while the police headquarters building has over 800 personnel.

“Each unit at CCTV command centre has at least 20 permanent policemen and women. The crime monitoring has more than 50. The directorate has a minimum of 60 staff. We think more than 1,000 police officers will be tested and many will be sent on self-isolation,” said the source.

At the rank of assistant inspector general of police, AIGP Kasingye’s contacts by Monday evening had been suspected to be more than 100 people. Kasingye is suspected to have acquired COVID-19 from people he has been meeting as they donated particularly PPEs to police, while those supposed to meet the IGP Ochola had also been channeled to his office.

“The IGP assigned him to handle all people who want to meet him. Since COVID-19 outbreak, IGP restricted access to his office except for police directors. We suspect he got COVID-19 from some of the people donating items to police who he has been meeting on behalf of the IGP,” a senior police officer told URN on Sunday.

AIGP Kasingye was last seen at police headquarters on Tuesday last week in the evening when he started feeling unwell. When his condition persisted, he called for health officials to check him at his home.

Two more deaths

Uganda’s coronavirus deaths have increased to 22 after another two more people were confirmed to have died of the virus. In a statement released today by the ministry of Health, the deceased are a 35-year-old female trader from Kikuubo and 36-year-old from Kisenyi, all in Kampala city.

Read Also: Uganda police steps up COVID-19 night operations in Kampala

Also, the total number of infections increased by 99 to 2,362 from the 3,457 samples tested yesterday. The virus continues to spread like wildfire within Kampala with the ministry of Finance reporting 21 positive cases and Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) registering 6 positive cases.

Among the 99 new cases, were 84 contacts and alerts, 5 were health workers, 4 were truck drivers while 6 returnees from Saudi Arabia and Kenya. 

Of the 99 contacts and alerts; 49 from Kampala, 8 from Gulu, 5 from Sirocco, 3 from Lira, 2 from Luweero, 2 from Torero, 2 from Yumbe, 2 from Mbale among others.