By Mourice Muhoozi
In recent months, the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) has been stepping up its operations regarding the installation of solar powered security lights along major roads in Kampala.
These have been installed on the streets of newly constructed roads which among others include Bwaise Junction Road, Makerere Hill Road, Mambule Road and Nakulabye-Kasubi Road. The security of these lights is ensured as they are equipped with cameras and computers that capture and record data.
Though KCCA has greatly invested in this project, that is to say; 7 billion shillings, a greater focus is put on the major additional benefits, the city dwellers have increasingly enjoyed as a result of their installation.
Here is a quick primer of the benefits that have sprung up as a result of the installation of these lights.
A greater improvement has been witnessed in the security sector as these lights have greatly aided security personnel in executing their activities. The fact that they are equipped with security cameras, defiant actions by errant drivers are captured and recorded. This has helped in the apprehension of big-headed drivers who adamantly defy the traffic rules.
According to Dr. Stephen Kasiima, the head of the traffic police in Uganda, these cameras installed with the solar lights help the security in identifying defiant drivers and criminals, even after a long period of time. “For those who don’t stop, violate or commit any offense around traffic lights, we shall get you even after one year”, asserted Kasiima, while appearing on press.
Important still, petty crime like pick-pocketing has been reduced, the fact that these lights aid people in being extra-ordinarily security conscious due to the enhancement of their sight by the lights and are therefore able to identify criminals easily and notify the responsible security personnel.
Besides, there is also longer use of public places for recreational and other economic activities. These places which include bars; restaurants can now work for longer hours of the night due to a clear sight of people aided by these solar lights. A case in point are bars and restaurants along the Makerere hill road, found on the Ham tower that operate for long hours of the night, due to the light provided by the so bright solar lights on these roads.
Needless to mention, these lights have created a beautiful scenery of the city. According to the study made by the International Renewable Energy titled lighting up streets, well public lighting improves the city’s quality of life, that is to say; the city looks pretty good, pleasant, alluring and a better place to be. They make a city look like a paradise, most especially at night. The atmosphere looks bright, road marks and demarcations look neat and this is amplified by the so bright shining stars in the sky. A case in point is the is the Makerere hill road that looks like delightful, most especially during night times.