171 taxis impounded for defying public transport ban


FILE PHOTO: Kampala police spokesperson Patrick Onyango

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Security agencies have today impounded 171 Taxis in Kampala for defying President Museveni’s ban on public transport.

Museveni on Wednesday night suspended all means of public transport in a bid to contain the spread of COVID -19, an epidemic that has so far infected 14 Ugandans. Among the banned public means include; Taxis, Buses, Tuk-Tuks and Boda-bodas.

Patrick Onyango, the Kampala police spokesperson said the enforcement involved deployed in strategic areas, along routes that lead to the city centre, markets, taxi and bus terminals and setting checkpoints.

Onyango said although the majority of the population adhered to the directives, some attempted to defy the orders. The resistance, according to Onyango forced security officers to impound their motor vehicles, motorcycles for violating Museveni orders. Up to 489 boda-bodas were impounded.

The operations that involved Local Defence Unit – LDUs, traffic police, army and field force police started as early as 4 am. Onyango said they arrested riders and drivers who were violent and aggressive towards police officers.

COVID -19 has killed more than 21,000 people worldwide, infected over 470,000 in different countries, while hundreds of thousands are still in critical condition. Uganda’s first COVID -19 case was announced on Saturday. Deputy Kampala Metropolitan Traffic Police Commander Rodgers Nsereko said that all taxis and boda-bodas impounded will be released after the ban on public transport has been lifted by the President.

Other 14 suspects were arrested around Container village in Central Kampala for attempting to steal from a motor vehicle along Burton street. Police were informed and responded and the thieves tried to run away but they were chased and arrested near container village.

They are currently being detained at CPS Kampala on theft charges. Police said apart from the few minor highlighted incidents, Kampala was peaceful and business in the various cleared places went on smoothly.

Nevertheless, security agencies particularly LDUs and FFP were criticized for clobbering vendors who were attending to their merchandise. In places such as Kisekka Market, Old Taxi Park, Kisenyi Bus Park and New Taxi Park people were beaten with sticks.



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