While presenting a request to Parliament to let government borrow about Shs391billion (USD 104m) from Standard Chartered Bank to finance the expansion of CCTV network, Minister of State for Planning, David Bahati has tipped the ‘street camera’ project to register a lot of positives.
Bahati told parliament that the Annual Uganda Police Force Crime Report of 2017 showed that Police investigates an average of 100,000 cases per year and the current cost of investigating one criminal case at least Shs5 million. He says the cost will be cut to less than half if more cameras are installed.
“With the CCTV system in place, the cost of criminal investigation will reduce to an estimated cost Shs2 million per case,” Bahati said.
Bahati says a few cameras and CCTV system that have been installed by government and private individuals since last year have greatly improved investigations.
“A lot has been achieved by the currently operating cameras through; securing the city and its surroundings through surveillance, Traffic management, and securing vital installations,” Bahati told parliament.
He says currently police is only managing 121 CCTV cameras in the entire country and a total of 220 cases have been investigated and prosecuted with the help of CCTV footage, between 2015-2018.
Though many MPs are in support of the loan move, they say that the project must not only focus on securing the city but rather also be moved to rural areas.
If the loan is approved, according to the presentations, the project will be implemented in a period of 25 months in two phases, covering Kampala metropolitan areas in phase one and the rest of the country in phase two. A lot will be done besides buying cameras and these will include; the designing and building of the main Command and Control Centre, mobile command and control centres and regional command and control centres.
The project was influenced by President Museveni last year after series of brutal murders happened across the country. These included the cold blood murder of a number of prominent personalities; former Buyende District Police Commander, Muhammad Kirumira, former MP for Arua Municipality, Hon. Ibrahim Abiriga, AIGP Andrew Kaweesi and several Muslim Clerics among others.