Police in Kampala arrested pastor Augustine Yiga of Revival Church Kawaala for 'uttering false information and spreading harmful propaganda' concerning the deadly coronavirus (Covid-19).
Pastor Yiga based in Rubaga division in Kampala, in a video that has since gone viral, claimed the virus is just a simple flu and was apprehended for undermining the Yoweri Museveni government's efforts to contain it.
"The Pastor is suspected to have said, in a video recording branded by BBS TV, that the Covid-19 is not in Uganda. The video that went viral undermines government efforts in fighting the pandemic and exposes the public to dangers of laxity in observing the guidelines issued," Uganda police tweeted.
According to Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson Patrick Onyango, the clergyman has been arrested for questioning over the statements that misled members of the public.
"The action of Pastor Iga promotes the spread of the COVID 19 and can, therefore, be considered as a direct attack on the people of the Republic of Uganda," Onyango said in a statement.
The Kampala police publicist warned the public to desist from such false and alarmist utterances.
"Therefore, the suspect, who is currently detained at Old Kampala Police Station will be interviewed to establish the motive behind the dangerous utterances," he added.
The number of people who have tested positive for coronavirus (Covid-19) in Uganda has jumped from 23 to 30.
"To date, a total of 1,175 cases are under follow up; 876 of these are under institutional quarantine while 299 are under self-quarantine. A total of 1,596 high-risk travelers have completed their 14 days of follow-up and have been issued with certificates of completion of the mandatory quarantine," the ministry said when announcing the seven new cases.