Residents of Gulu town have blamed the recent and rampant assassinations, kidnaps and robberies to inability of the top management of the police force.
Our senior reporters in Gulu and Lira, Michael Ojok and Jaspher Ouni gathered views of the public on the current state of security in the country and the arrest of Gen. Kale Kayihura. Below are excerpt.
Disbanded units in the police force
Komakech Jolly Kamarisami a resident of Lacor trading center in Layibi division attributes the rampant cases of kidnaps, assassination and murders of Ugandans to the disbandment of some of the units in the police force. Some of the disbanded units he cited are Police Flying Squad which he says forced the affected officers to form cliques so as to prove the new police leadership wrong.
Komakech also blamed the police saying, “the surveillance system of the police is poor; comparing the trend and similarities of minor killings, kidnaps, to assassination which have very little difference.”
Denis Ongeng a resident of Pece division in Gulu municipality says, “There is a breakdown in how the public security is being managed by the police and other security agencies.”
Ongeng, however, challenges the locals to be part of their own security especially neighborhood watch.
Jacqueline Achieng a vendor at Gulu main market says the security forces have neglected its own security.
She added that the security is focused only on improving and restoring peace in neighboring countries like the Central African Republic, Somalia among others, leaving its territory vulnerable for terrorist groups to plan and execute their plans with no disruption.
Arrest of Gen. Kayihura and his top allies
Kilak North MP Anthony Akol says the arrest of Gen Kayihura and some of the top commanders of the disbanded police Flying Squad is a step toward cleaning the police Force lately infiltrated by weevils as was stated by President Museveni last year.
Akol also the Finance Shadow Minister in the 10th Parliament of Uganda notes that: “The police should provide a clear database of the number of guns given out to Ugandan for various reasons.”
Former deputy IGP Julius Peter Occur Odwe says arresting any security officer won’t clean up the force unless individual repent from doing dirty business.
Odwe who was second in command to now embattled former IGP Gen. Kale Kayihura, says the current police force must up their efforts in order to win the trust of Ugandans again.
Meanwhile, the Fourth Division army spokesperson Major Telesphor Turyamumanya attributed the wave of criminal activities in Uganda to moral degeneration, indiscipline, greed, where he says weak people want to assume strength, power of which they don’t have the capacity to do so.
“That has little or no relationship with criminality. The current cowardly acts are related to moral degeneration, indiscipline, greed, … where weak people want to assume strength, power etc they don’t have,” Major Turyamumanya noted.
To Aswa region police spokesperson Patrick Jimmy Okema, he could not give his opinion on some security lapses in his region. “It’s a national matter and can only be handled by my boss, SSP Emilian Kayima,” he briefly responded.
Credit to Michael Ojok & Jaspher Ouni