By Fred Kiva
Uganda Police has directed its territorial commanders on provision of security to pilgrims trekking to Namugongo Martyrs Shrine, ahead of the June 3 Martyrs Day.
Police Spokesperson Fred Enanga told a weekly press briefing on Monday that all commanders in the various parts of the country have been ordered to ensure that the pilgrims are secure while in their areas of jurisdiction as they trek to Namugongo.
“This therefore, is to inform the public that the joint security task team, actively policing the annual event, has, as part of its wider, mapped out security strategies, tasked all territorial commanders and their respective communities to be sensitive to the feelings of the pilgrims, travelling on foot, and ensure they receive maximum security and hospitality, within their jurisdiction,” Enanga said.
“We would like to further remind them that amongst the many hundreds, are pilgrims from different parts of Uganda as well as from the immediate neighboring countries of DRC, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi and South Sudan, who trek the long distance in advance, on foot in honor of the Uganda martyrs. It is therefore very essential that their safety and security, along the major highways is guaranteed and to further provide reassurance, support and advice to the pilgrims,” he added.
Enanga cautioned pilgrims against light night movements avoid late night movements and urged them to coordinate with the police on how to use the busy traffic roads to help prevent accidents along the way. “And in addition, they are reminded to be more vigilant while in Kampala city due to the busier traffic and congestion and to guard against criminals who would wish to prey on the unsuspecting pilgrims travelling to Namugongo,” the Police spokesperson emphasized.
Every year , more than half a million Christians celebrate the Uganda Martyrs by making pilgrimage to Namugongo, in what is the country’s biggest annual gathering of worshipers.