A woman in Kikuube district, Catherine Nyakato, has been arrested for allegedly misusing a mosquito net distributed by the government to combat malaria. The arrest occurred at Buhumba Police post, following a routine monitoring of government programs by Resident District Commissioner Amlan Tumusiime.
The incident unfolded a week after the Health Ministry’s mass distribution of insecticide-treated nets to residents in the district. Tumusiime expressed shock upon discovering that the new mosquito net given to the suspect was being used to trap white ants instead of for its intended purpose of preventing malaria.
Addressing the media, Tumusiime stated that such actions sabotage government health programs and emphasized the importance of using mosquito nets as intended. The suspect, Catherine Nyakato, was handed over to the police and will face prosecution as a deterrent to others.
Tumusiime urged local leaders and government officials to remain vigilant in apprehending those misusing mosquito nets. He highlighted various instances of misuse, including turning them into fishing nets, constructing bathrooms, chicken houses, sieves for making juice, and brewing local beverages.
The Resident District Commissioner stressed that the distribution drive aimed to reduce malaria incidences and called on local leaders and Village Health Teams (VHTs) to ensure proper use of the nets. Buhimba mayor Mugisa Musa supported the arrest, emphasizing the need for public awareness about the importance of mosquito nets and attributing misuse to ignorance.
Albertine Police region spokesperson Julius Hakiiza confirmed the arrest, stating that the suspect is awaiting court proceedings on charges of sabotaging government efforts in fighting malaria.