Moroto, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The installation of Closed Circuit Television Camera’s (CCTV) in strategic spots in Moroto town has aroused excitement amongst residents. Many are optimistic that with the cameras in place, crime rates will drastically reduce especially in urban neighborhoods.
Moroto is one of the fastest growing towns in the northeastern region of Uganda because of the presence of mineral endowments like gold, mercury, marble, and limestone. As the area authorities plan to upgrade it to a marble city in the next two years, security cameras are also seen as an area of progress in the fight against urban crime.
Security cameras have so far been installed in nine spots across Moroto district in line with a government initiative to curtail organized crime in major towns, cities and municipalities. This was initiated at the height of an unprecedented wave of murders and kidnappings targeting high profile persons.
Mt. Moroto Regional Legal Officer Thomas Ocen Opiga says that cameras have for been erected at the Moroto main junction, the bus park, places with important government installations and a number of busy streets within the central business district. He is optimistic that with the cameras in place, police will be able to track suspects for crimes committed within the radius of about 2 kilometres.
“…This is a big security asset for the community… They are equivalent to the presence of security personnel in a given place, so they should not be damaged,” Opiga told URN.
Karamoja Regional ICT Officer Francis Okecho says they have also installed CCTV cameras in other towns like Iriir, Lorengechora, Matany and Kangole to monitor crime and traffic-related offences. He said the police would extend security cameras to other towns in Karamoja once the cable network is extended out of Moroto town where it ends currently.
Jackson Adome Angella, an elder and businessman in Moroto town says the installation of the cameras is great progress in the fight against crime, pointing out the increasing rates of housebreaking targeting business people.
Michal Olobo a driver in Moroto believes the cameras will also help the police in enforcing traffic regulations.
Rogers Waiswa, another resident hopes CCTV cameras will be essential in monitoring crime in a border town like Moroto.
According to the 2019 crime report released by police in April, Karamoja region topped the list in rates of murder by shooting. Mt. Moroto policing region registered 16 deaths by shooting with Moroto district recording 5 deaths.