BY ROBERT ATIKU

MARACHA: Maracha district security forces have so far arrested 834 persons in connection with violation of COVID_19 guidelines and other other criminal offences. This statistics is for a period of three months starting from late March this year when the guidelines came into force.
Of this number, 658 persons were released on police bond, 91 of them were cautioned and 85 persons were arraigned in court.

The Maracha District Police Commander Mr. Hassan Hiwumbire said, the statistics has generated alot of misinformation among the public.
“There is misinformation that Maracha has arrested so many people but we are arresting these people because they have not followed the guidelines. People were saying that the prison of Arua is full of the people from Maracha. The people whom we have taken to court out of the 834 persons arrested are only 85, others are on bond and some are cautioned. So let’s not have that misinformation passing around.” Mr. Hiwumbire said.

The Maracha District Internal Security Officer (DISO), Mr.Samuel Surundu says the statistics is an indication of the effectiveness of the security of ground.

“The instructions are arrest people, where the cases are light, pardon them where ofcourse the cases are criminal in nature, take them to court. So when you look at these numbers, these are not big numbers. For three months only eight hundred people (arrested). This is very small. And this is general, COVID and other criminal actions. The arrests are not as many as they should be but the arrests are as many as they are because of the instructions. And it shows the effectiveness of the security of ground.” Mr. Surundu commented.

However the Resident District Commissioner Maracha Mrs. Soet Esther Cherop who is the Chairperson of COVID_19 District Task Force and Head of Security in Maracha has directed the security forces to arrest anyone who compromises with the Presidential directives to fight COVID_19 disease.

“We have to follow the Presidential directives and guidelines from the Ministry of health with no compromise. If a politician has failed to follow these(guidelines), arrest, if my chairman of the district has violated some of these rules arrest him and if the Chairman NRM comes and disturbs you over the arrests, arrest him also and any other person in this committee. Because we are not working for our own.” Mrs. Soet directed.

The Secretary for social services committee in Maracha district council Mr. Bosco Asea appreciated the efforts of the security forces in fight against COVID_19 pandemic.

“I just want to acknowledge entire security team for marvelous work that they are doing in the district. We do not need to discuss Presidential directives but at times we are drawn to issues where irregularities come in. It has been true that we have really relaxed in the recent months because people thought that COVID_19 disease would end soon.” Mr. Asea said.

Maracha district has not yet recorded a positive case of the deadly COVID_19 disease.
With the Presidential directives still in force, the security personel in Maracha continue to carry out patrols within the district. End