VIP cars to be fitted with  CCTV cameras – Gen Lokech

Thursday June 10 2021
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Following the attack on Gen Katumba Wamala and other high profile figures while in transit, security agencies are planning to install CCTV cameras on very important persons’ vehicles so that their movement and apparent danger can be monitored instantly. PHOTO/ ABUBAKER LUBOWA

By Andrew Bagala

 Following the attack on Gen Katumba Wamala and other high profile figures while in transit, security agencies are planning to install CCTV cameras on very important persons’ vehicles so that their movement and apparent danger can be monitored instantly.
The deputy Inspector General of Police, Maj Gen Paul Lokech, said the CCTV cameras will be linked to the CCTV command centre.

“I also observed the lack of Very Important Persons Protection Unit  (VIPPU) cameras. Apart from the other cameras (on the road), there should be cameras on the vehicles [of VIPs] that would be sending instant signals to the command centre of any action or any act of attack. Those are areas we are going to improve on,” Gen Lokech said on Tuesday.
Gen Katumba was shot and injured while in his army vehicle by assailants, who were riding motorcycles. 

His daughter Brenda Nantongo and driver Haruna Kayondo were killed in the attack on Kisota Road in Kisaasi, Kampala.
The police CCTV camera system did not cover the area where the incident happened. Police again had to rely on eyewitnesses for information regarding the case. 
Dependence on eyewitnesses, which President Museveni often referred to as alina amulabyeko (who has seen him/her), is what he attempted to cure by ordering for the installation of CCTV cameras. 
However, in several incidents, security agencies have taken long to respond when such attacks happen.

Maj Gen Lokech said the assailants spent nearly an hour within the vicinity after the shooting as they looked for routes to escape, but could not be detected quickly.
He said the CCTV system project still has gaps, but would require more funding to cover them. 
“I walked from the scene of crime to Gen Katumba’s home. It is 1.4km. Not even a single CCTV camera was on that road. So you can see the gaps. And yet there are junctions, there are roads which join the main road. We need to have more cameras at those junctions. It requires funding, we shall talk to the government,” he said.

Kampala Metropolitan Police Area is covered by 3,200 CCTV cameras.
He said there was lack of timely coordination between the CCTV command centre and the response team on the ground. 
“Our teams on foot, motorcycle squads and 999 patrols were not alert. This affected our response in countering the assailants, making cut-off points to confine them within the locality for arrest and adequately securing the scene of crime and its surrounding,” he said. 

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