Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Several hotels in Kampala on Friday ushered in the New Year with parties, despite police banning organizing events.
A survey by URN reporters in the areas of Bukoto, Ntinda, Nakawa found some hotels filled with revelers celebrating the New Year.
On Monday, the Police Spokesperson Fred Enanga had said that every person was expected to be indoors on New Year’s eve. He also said that the security agencies will deploy personnel in various places to ensure that no one is walking, driving, or operating restricted businesses like bars during curfew time.
The road leading to Skyz Hotel in Naguru was filled with several vehicles. At the entrance of the hotel, several police officers thoroughly checked whoever was entering the hotel.
At Forest Cottages in Ntinda, the gardens and the swimming pool side were filled to capacity with revelers who were drinking and eating as they prepared to usher in the New Year.
A police double cabin registration number UG 2399N was seen parked outside the gate to offer protection to the revelers. However, there was no display of fireworks after they were banned by the police.
There were however few vehicles on the road and police patrols as well as a Road Block at Kira Road Police Station asking people to identify themselves to see if they are essential workers to be allowed to be on the road.
In suburbs like Kyebando and Bukoto, some residents were seen banging jerry cans, drums, and burning rubbish in the middle of the roads as they ushered in the New Year.
In Kasubi, Kawaala, Nakulabye, Namungoona Masanafu, and Lugala police spent the better part of the night with revelers who had converged in hangouts to usher in the New Year.
The Police started cracking down on Boda Boda riders who were carrying passengers past the curfew hours. Shops that were still open after 8 pm were also ordered to close.
At Georgina Gardens at Lubya Hill, police stormed the venue at 11:15 pm and dispersed hundreds of revelers who were planning to usher in the New Year.
The police also dispersed residents of Namungoona who were burning piles of rubbish in the middle of the road, disrupting the traffic along Masiro road.
The Buganda Kingdom ushered in the new year through an online music show dubbed Enkuuka Tumbiiza.
The music show that was streamed live on radio was held at the CBS FM studios at Masengere and featured different artists. They included Jose Chameleon, Henry Mwanje, Felistar, Levixone, King Saha, Simon Rock comedian duo Maulana and Reign.
Before the outbreak of Covid-19, thousands of revelers would flock to the Lubiri grounds for the end-of-year show that was always attended by the Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi.
This year the Kingdom chose to hold the show virtually due to the government restrictions on concerts and public gatherings.
They followed the Police directives of no display of fireworks.