Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | At least 26 people were rescued from drowning in Lake Victoria in Entebbe and Kalangala district during Christmas and Boxing day festivities.
Marine police alone rescued four people from drowning at Aero, Lido and Spenah beaches in Entebbe municipality, while 9 were rescued around the beaches in Kalangala district.
The rescued people were part of revelers attending different parties and music shows to commemorate Christmas. Other people were rescued by life savers deployed by Swim Safe, a non-governmental organization fighting against drowning in Uganda.
An ambulance from Uganda Red Cross Society was also called in to rescue 10 people including women and foreign nationals who were attacked and their property stolen by goons at the different recreation grounds.
Anthony Amanya, the Commandant of the Marine Police Unit told Uganda Radio Network on Friday morning that those rescued had gone swimming in crowded places after taking alcohol, which undermined their ability to swim.
He cautioned revelers to avoid crowded places in the remaining days of the festivities since most entertainment spots don’t have sufficient manpower to handle crowds of more than 20,000 people.
Last Week, Haji Noor Njuuki, the Deputy Resident District Commissioner in Charge of Entebbe cautioned residents and beach owners that they risk being arrested if they fail to follow guidelines put in place by security to avoid crime during the festive season.
Some of the deadlines included deploying life savers on all beaches, demarcating dangerous spots on the Lake and probating people from swimming beyond 6.00pm.
Despite this, most of the beaches visited by URN in Entebbe on Christmas and Boxing Day had a single life saver. Some of the places such as Botanical Gardens allowed revelers to swim beyond 6.00 pm.