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Police storms Post Bank to enforce social distancing

Mbale central police station faced off with UPDF soldiers and LDUs who had queued up in disregard of the physical distancing guidelines to withdraw money from the bank. Courtesy photo

Mbale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A team of police officers stormed Post Bank branch in Mbale town on Monday afternoon to enforce physical distancing as part of the COVID-19 preventive measures.

The police officers led by Nesperio Kizza, the Officer in charge of operations at Mbale central police station faced off with Uganda People’s Defense Forces-UPDF soldiers and Local Defence Unit personnel who had queued up in disregard of the physical distancing guidelines to withdraw money from the bank.

It took the intervention of Jude Wandera, the 3rd Division UPDF Public Relations Officer to calm down the soldiers who had turned rowdy. Wandera said the commotion at the bank was a result of the payment of salaries and the overwhelming need by the officers to withdraw their money.

Rodgers Taitika, the Elgon Region police spokesperson said they have talked with bank managers to ensure their clients observe the physical distancing and other Covid-19 preventive measures to avoid closure. He says the congestion at banks in Mbale is worrying since bank clients come from various districts.

David Ikotot, the acting manager Mbale Post Bank told the police officers that they have tried to enforce the Covid-19 preventive guidelines but some of their customers are adamant.

Annet Nandelega, the manager Centenary Bank Mbale Branch said they are trying to manage the numbers from outside but they are facing a challenge of ensuring the required social distancing. She however said that the bank has tried to limit the time clients spend in the banking hall by serving them expeditiously.

Stephen Kasebe, a customer at Centenary bank says banks haven’t done enough to provide shelter for their clients that is why many of them are struggling to enter the banking halls to avoid the scorching sun.

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