By John Ogulei
Police in Soroti have arrested and detained a total of 65 suspects accused of violating the Presidential and Ministry of Health Guidelines and standard Operating Procedures in stopping the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
The Arrests come after Health Experts in Soroti revealed that the region is currently the epicenter of COVID-19.
Soroti Regional Referral Hospital currently has 70 positive persons admitted and close to 45 on Oxygen.
The 65 were arrested yesterday 16th September 2021 in the areas of Nakatunya, Kigandani, Teso Inn, Morapesur, Agip and Pamba, all known as local bar hotspots.
According to the East Kyoga Police Mouthpiece, ASP Ageca Oscar Gregory, the police has beefed up the presence of law enforcement officers to minimize the spread of the deadly pandemic.
“Today Thursday 16th day of September 2021, the regional police of East Kyoga would like to announce that they have increased the conduct of operations on implementation of Covid-19 Standard Operating Procedures in light of Teso Sub region in particular Soroti district becoming one of the 16 districts in Uganda with a high rate of Covid-19 prevalence and infection,” said ASP Ageca.
Adding that disregard of these SOPs shall be met with strict enforcement measures that shall include arrests.
“In light of the above, on the night of 15th/09/2021 law enforcement officers at Soroti city carried out operations and arrested 65 people from the areas of Nakatunya, Kigandani, Teso Inn, Morapesur, Agip and Pamba. Our Operations are intelligence led,” he noted.
The arrested suspects are being detained at CPS Soroti for the offense of committing an act likely to spread an infectious disease against the Penal laws of Uganda and shall be arraigned before the courts of judicature for prosecution and the award of any such punishment as prescribed by law.
The rise in COVID-19 cases in the region has raised eyebrows amongst the Kampala based experts and Presidential advisors with most of them calling for total Lockdown of Teso in order to stop the transportation of the virus to other regions.
The City Head of COVID-19 Taskforce, Peter Paak, also the City Resident Commissioner said people of Teso need to act in accordance with the issued guidelines.
He warned that failure to comply may lead to arrests and also encouraged people of Teso, especially those who have been bar owners to change business.