“We shall not hand over power to the opposition to destabilize the peace which we fought for,” Uganda Police Chief, Kale Kayihura, is quoted telling crime preventers in eastern Kapchorwa last week.
Kayihura urged the crime preventers to get ready for war.
“We are going to change you from having sticks to rifles and get ready to defend this country in case of any attack,” he remarked.
He added: “The constitution gives police powers to protect the nation in case there is war and I want you to get prepared for this; anytime, we shall call on you.”
Kayihura was passing out of about 65,000 crime preventers at Sebei College on the 21st January 2016.
RDCs of Kapchorwa, Kween, and Bukwo, I don’t know how many police officers you have there in uniform and if we are to deploy them, I don’t think we can confidently say we can fight crime,” Kayihura said.
“But with the resource of 65000 crime preventers and you have seen what they have shown to you in two months, because this means a lot, it means fitness, it shows a team which is organized, so this is our force and in case you are attacked from across, but I don’t think it can happen, now we have got a force to deal with them.”
He added: “All we need to do is to change the sticks and give them rifles and by the way I would like to tell you this, you are a reserve of the army, in case of war, you will be called upon because the police are the reserve of the army, according to the law.”
Kayihura said according to the Police Act, the Minister of Internal Affairs, at any time, can call the police to serve as a military force, so by extension the crime preventers in case of any a war, can be called upon.
“And that’s why they should be trained in skills at arm and self defense, so that you have a force here. And by the way, this is a continuation where it started in our neighborhood zone, in the fight against state inspired terrorism of Idi Amin, through the struggles of Mr. Sabila and FRONASA who fought against Idi Amin and won.”
So what people are trying to vulgarize and confuse, started long time ago in 1977, in the fight against Idi Amin, when they empowered people to fight against crime in government, Kayihura noted.
He said at that time Idi Amin was killing people, Maliyamungu, and so they mobilized the people, and fought with the support of Tanzania.
“Then later, after the Idi Amin dictatorship, they fought terrorism in the government after 1981, where some patriots went to the bush. This was by mobilizing people to fight the government which had the support of the most powerful countries in the world and removed it after five years.”
“We are celebrating 30 years next week and the victory of the people’s war. So when I went to the police and found the idea of this community policing, neighborhood watch, I said I will organize the ordinary people to fight crime and criminals and if you see in all communities, in all districts, the criminals are few, but they are organized, where as the law abiding citizens are many but are not organized. So the whole idea is organizing at the neighborhood level and empowering them with self defense and other skills as the surest way of eliminating crime.”
Kayihura said America too has crime preventers yet they have a bigger police force and resources than us the 3rd world countries.
“Am very grateful to H.E the President, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet and even Parliament, who have come up very clearly to say no, this is a legitimate program, it is constitutional , lawful , it is empowering , its improving strength of the country.”
“These people who are talking, some of them are ignorant, and I am suspicious they want our country to remain disorganized and weak, so that they can swallow us, especially when they have heard there is oil.”
“You know when they talk about the oil curse, what they mean. So the government is very clear on this matter and nobody should even waste our time because this is a democratic policing. We are empowering ourselves, the community, to fight criminals in the neighborhood. I don’t know even whom they vote and it’s not my business. Mine is special that the country is secure 24/7.”
“The other day there was some Human Rights Watch lady and she is even my friend, who came to ask me and even made a statement that we suspend crime preventers. And my response was, “ok if you want me to suspend crime preventers you should also suspend the criminals”, but will not suspend the crime preventers because the criminals are there.”
Kayihura said they would revise the LC system and “mayumba kumi” to ensure crime preventers are empowered in all ways to defend the country.
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