Isn’t Uganda police better off under Kayihura as police chief than before?
By Guide reporter
People might forget and fight General Kale Kayihura, but like Jose Chameleon sung that ”Basiima Ogenze” tune, few IGPs have worked tirelessly for the force than Kayihura.
Anyone that says Kayihura is giving the force a bad name, should be knowing little about running institutions especially the police he inherited in 2005.
Police was once security’s kitchen sink, despised and underfunded, but since Kayihura arrived, there are still challenges like poor pay and housing, but, it has gone through tremendous transformation and more manifest are their tools of work.
Officers I have met say issues of under-staffing are on their way behind the police, with policemen who are given ample training at good facilities than ever before. Kayihura’s image has been however tarnished by self seeking opposition politicians and government insiders that see him as a hindrance to their achieving individual goals.
The opposition for example have refused to work with the police and choose the confrontational path knowing well that that’s the path the police will take if they defy its orders. However, if you want to know if Police is suffering an image crisis or not, listen to prospective recruits.
Once upon a time, police was a considered career for failures and social misfits. Today’s police has changed a lot, with a crop of young officers whose education is better than MPs who are thrown out of parliament over qualification scandals. The police is competing with UPDF for the top cream from universities and other institutions. Give it to Kayihura’s leadership.
The police has therefore become an admired institution, from the orphanage it was yesteryears. It’s not unusual to hear comments from the public that police has a big budget. That was never the case. Police officers have transport means and work tools. Those going to police stations are no longer asked to buy pens and books to register a complaint like it was prevalent before.
There’s also the power of the IGP who happens to be close to the president. That has given police an advantage and a listening ear for institution that is as vital as the police force. In the process, police has been key in unfolding pockets of insecurity largely before they turned out more dangerous. The fact that people complain of police beating is in itself an achievement that police is no longer expected to be brutal…It’s no longer the norm.
Kayihura is becoming a victim of his success. With neighborhoods more secure, political actors are no longer complaining about prevalent theft, unresolved murders or iron bar hitmen like was in the past. It’s therefore unfair to hold Kayihura responsible for actions of men who act outside command.
Like in the military, when an officer rapes or shoots people, it’s not the army chief brought to book, but the individual officers. Kayihura has of course created lots of enemies in the course of his duties but it cannot be lost on us that he has mobilized the force to do lots of good things for Uganda and they’re growing strong