President Museveni has hailed CCTV cameras as a game changer in improving the country’s security predicament.
Following the spate of murders and incidents of criminality, the president ordered for the installation of CCTV cameras as a measure to help fight criminals in the city and various urban centres.
Consequently, a total of 5,552 CCTV cameras are set to be installed in various places around the country with the Kampala Metropolitan districts of Wakiso, Kampala and Mukono taking a lion’s share with 3233 cameras on 1248 sites.
Speaking to NBS Television in an exclusive interview on Monday, the president said the country’s security has greatly improved, courtesy of the installation of the “artificial eyes”.
“The security has improved mainly because of the technical interventions…..the security services had got infiltrated by bad elements like criminals and corrupt people. Even now they are there but things are now much easier because of cameras and other technical interventions,”Museveni said.
He cited the Nagirinya incident in which a social worker was kidnapped together with her driver and later killed, saying that the CCTV cameras played a crucial role in the arrest of the suspects.
“You remember the people who killed Nagirinya were caught on camera. The fellow who had killed Nagirinya and drover her car was captured on camera and we got the whole gang. They are now inside (prison).”
According to Museveni, the criminals in the past used the loophole of under investment in technical interventions in security to terrorise the country but noted this is no longer possible.
The president insisted that cleaning up the security system which had been infiltrated is still on-going but noted that the situation has stabilised greatly since the introduction of technical interventions.
“It is no longer a big issue. We mobilised the LDUs . The problem of insecurity has gone away. Do you now hear of the killings like in Masaka? Those fellows who used to attack villages are no longer there. Some of them have been killed and other arrested.”
On deploying army officers in top police positions, the president said whereas they had done a good job, some things need to be rectified in the police force.
“There are still corrupt people there but we shall get them,” he said.
President Museveni late last year opened the new national command centre for CCTV cameras at the Police headquarters in Naguru.
The newly installed CCTV cameras are of two types including the fixed and Pan Tilt Zoom(PTZ) cameras that rotate and views 360 degrees.
The cameras also have a feature of automatic number plate recognition for reading number plates including those for motorcycles.
The CCTV cameras also have a facial recognition feature, night vision, Global Positioning System (GPS) and automatic cleaning system.
Police has always released success stories for the CCTV cameras indicating that crime has greatly reduced after apprehension of criminals with the help of the cameras.
Annual crime report
In the recently released annual crime report for the year 2019, Police indicated that the crime rate had reduced by 9.8% from 238,746 cases reported in 2018 to 215,224 cases reported in 2019.
“This decrease in crimes in 2019 is attributed to some of the following deliberate actions like government investment in anti – crime infrastructure(CCTV cameras),continued community sensitisation against engaging in crime and busting and dismantling of organised criminal syndicates throughout the country,” the report released last month indicated.
“In 2019, CCTV helped in identification of suspects in seven different cases while forensic examination of weapons used in crime linked a number of weapons to 21 different crime scenes. Deployment of LDU and Flying Squad contributed to the decrease in crime and equipping Crime Intelligence to enhance pre-emptive action.”