Chief Investigative Department director Grace Akullo has revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic travel ban led to a reduction in the importation of drugs.
Interpol and the anti-narcotics police department have realized a report indicating that the travel ban that was insisted last year from March to June lead to a great decline in the number of drugs being imported into the country.
Basing on the report, the narcotics department recorded 1,714 cases in 2020 which was less that 2019 which had a total of 2,750 cases. Additionally, 41.9 kilograms which could be estimated at 1.7 billion Uganda shillings were confiscated in 2020 while a total of 132 kilograms were captured in 2020 whose value was estimated to be 4.5 billion Uganda shillings.
Police further disclosed that the figures that were initially confiscated were got in the earlier months of January, February and part of March before the country was sent into a total lockdown.
Due to this, the interpol and the anti-narcotics department came to a conclusion that majority of the drugs that were smuggled into the country were hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic total lockdown on travel.
Chief Investigative Department director Grace Akullo confirmed in her statement that indeed the travel ban is the reason as to why their was a drop in International drug related dealings.
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“The decrease was attributed to the total lockdown of the country from March to June 2020 to curb the spread of Covid-19 meaning few people were traveling through the airport and reducing the opportunity for transiting drugs through Uganda,” Grace Akullo stated.
However, although the importation of drugs into the country was suffocated, the in-country activity only increased as many citizens especially the youth were involved in drug-related activities during the lockdown as 2,391 people, 2,308 males, 45 females, and 38 juveniles were arrested.