President Museveni sacks Minister Tumukunde and IGP Kayihura: However, will it make a difference?
Today, two loyalists of the President has gotten fired, this was sudden and was not anticipated. Today on the 4th March 2018, the Inspector General of the Police Edward Kale Kayihura and the Director General of Internal Security Organization (ISO) General Henry Tumukunde. Both have been dropped suddenly after the recent leaks of lacking policing and rising crime in Uganda. There been reported of only 5% rate of murders being solved in the recent year.
“A statement signed by the President and dated 4th March, 2018, reads as follows: In the Exercise of the powers vested in the President by Articles 113 (1) and 213 (2) of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, I hereby appoint General Elly Tumwiine as Minister for Security, Mr. Okoth Ochola as the Inspector-General of Police and Brigadier Sabiiti Muzeei as the Deputy Inspector General of Police”.
So the President has actually acted on the worse state of the Police and the public perception, as the police has been more focused on opposition politicians, than actually fighting crime. I don’t think the Police Force will stop doing that and also ban Besigye from dinners and public gatherings. However, this is proof that the President acts. Even if he is late to the party, since he should known that the Police have had gangs working for them and intimidated them. It isn’t like the President did this while the Muslim Cleric died or the woman at Entebbe died last year. Not that the Police leadership changed when the AIGP Andrew Kaweesi was killed. Therefore, the Boda Boda 2010 and the Crime Preventers issues must have really hurt some pride. Since, the change happens now. As the ISO is investigating Police Force and the Police Force was starting to investigate agents who did kidnap civilians and also did dirty work. Clearly, the President maybe wanted to stop that sort of acts. Since both actions make it look stupid and also looks like to different criminal groups, which is sanctioned from the state.
So now the NRM goes back to the NRA days, as they are hiring Tumwiine, as the Daily Monitor reports: “The new security minister Gen Elly Tumwine served as Commander of the National Resistance Army from 1984 to 1987. Gen Tumwine who also sits on the UPDF High Command fired the first shot in the National Resistance war. He replaces Gen Henry Tumukunde” (Daily Monitor, 04.03.2018).
So Tumukunde loses ISO and Ministry of Security, the battle between Kayihura made them both lose. Even as Kayihura wasn’t long ago promised a new tenure and term. Therefore, his contract got taken back and now he lost his job on a Sunday. It was on 2nd May 2017 that Kayihura for a new three year term. Now the Deputy IGP John Martins Okoth Ochola takes over becomes the IGP. J.M. Okoth Ochola is what you call a traditional Police Officer, if he will implement that, instead of the military attitude of Kayihura is to be seen. As he has worked for years under Kayihura.
All of this might change the faces of the Police Force and the Ministry of Security, however, it is the same President and the same party behind it. If the Parliament, the President and the Security Organization wants change, the procedures and institutional polices has to change. The accountability and the organization has to change. The Police Force isn’t make the nation safe, neither was ISO or the UPDF. The Special Forces Command or any other organization created to secure the public. That is why people is murdered and there are no signs of proper investigations, even criminals who just get away with their crimes.
This change might happen because of the United States new Travel Advisory on the 10th January 2018 said: “Exercise increased caution in Uganda due to crime. Violent crime, such as armed robbery, home invasion, and sexual assault, is common, especially in larger cities including Kampala and Entebbe. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crime” (Travel.State.Gov, 10.01.2018).
So they are have started to worry about the state of the police in Uganda. When they are warning their tourists. It says a lot about how they know about the current state of policing in Uganda. This must have gotten into the ears of Museveni and that is why he fires both of them. As the squabble between Kayihura and Tumukunde, has been fought in public. As the ISO has gone after proxy organizations of the Police Force. They have taken people connected with Kayihura and now he didn’t just lose, but Tumukunde got sacked too. When you play high, the rewards might be high, but fall might be worse.
People despise Kayihura for his actions and his defense of the NRM, the political driven police force, who has bankrupt the Force and also extended the mandate because of the Public Order Management Act of 2010. The POMA clearly made the Police Force focused on policing and monitoring opposition, more than collecting evidence and actually solving crimes. The Police Work has been left behind, they have used fear and used gangs to stop people. It has been strange, but it was sanctioned and accepted until now.
President Museveni suddenly acted swiftly, as he wanted to save face, even if the barren organization, the bankrupt system is still there. The scandals and the lack of morals are there. The ISO and UPF are still two security organizations without trust in the public, because they are more into politics, than fighting crimes. They are no bipartisan, but a visible hand of the NRM.
The insecurity and the lack of policing is something that has occurred over time. It wasn’t created in a vacuum of Kayihura or Tumukunde. This was done by President and with his orders. Kayihura has said his been a loyal man who just follows orders. He will continue to say that to clean his hands of dirt, as he has done his vicious and malicious acts against the citizens. Kayihura knows this and he knows he has made political prisoners and done so as ordered from the State House. That is where the big problem is, it is the State House. The organizations, the institutions and the insecurity has been made from there.
It is the lack of transparency, oversight and accountability of the Security Organizations, it is the lack of resources and the maladministration. It is the whole structure and the orders from the President, who promise and pledge, but doesn’t invest. Museveni has created this, but it is easier to sack someone, than actually destroy something and rebuild. Right now the Police Force isn’t professional, neither is ISO. The lack of protocol, procedure and training, is the reason for this mess. The lack of actual officers who do their duty and has no reason to even do so.
We should also worry about Gen. Tumwine, the former NRA and rebel whose been loyal to Museveni, don’t expect ISO and Ministry of Security to be nice and smooth. The malicious acts of the Ministry will continue, as the vicious crackdown of 2001 was in the hands of the general. Who while in charge made sure dissidents entered Kigo Prison, which was leaked in 2005 and 2006. Therefore, the world knows that he tortured lawyer, human rights activists and also opposition activists there. Therefore, Tumwine, might do similar things now that he has power in service of Museveni. So he goes from the UPDF General Court Martial, where he has stated in the powers. That previous trials and charges on Besigye was ordered and not made on legal basis. Therefore, he is brave enough to speak up against Museveni. But if he will do more than speaking is likely, since Museveni has made him general and made him Minister again.
We just have to see how this goes. Surprised today, yes and not so worried about the battle between Okoth Ochola and Tumwine. But if they will rock-the-boat, I doubt it and if they will reform their institutions and their organizations. I doubt that too. They will be figureheads who are loyal to Museveni and await orders from the State House. We will just see if their leadership roles, can stop the insecurity and the problematic state the Police has no in society.
The top chef, the one who has created this dish is in the State House. It is the President who is in-charge and let all of this happen. It is Museveni who didn’t act and made it possible for the Police to investigate and make sure the Police could solve the crimes done, the murders and all other activity. Clearly, that hasn’t been possible.
Time will tell if that will happen now! Peace.