What the sacking of Gen. Kayihura and Lt. Gen Henry Tumukunde means for Uganda
On Sunday, 4th March, the long term serving President of Uganda, H.E Yoweri Kaguta Museveni sacked the security chiefs, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Gen. Kaleekezi Kayihura also known as Kale, and the Minister of Security Lt. General Henry Tumukunde through a tweet on the President’s official twitter handle @kagutamuseveni that attracted mixed feelings from the populace.
Over the last few months, Uganda’s major security organs have been at war with each other to an extent that the security of the country was compromise and had already allowed the infiltration of the Mafia. Well as one organ tried to clean up, it was doing so in an area whose jurisdiction it didn’t have thus causing a war between two agencies and two former bush war generals, Gen. Kale Kayihura and Lt. Gen. Henry Tumukunde right until the time the President decided to sack them.
From being a trusted Cadre of President Museveni, Gen. Kale Kayihura rose to IGP in 2005. Being a result oriented lawyer and soldier, he was trusted by many to change the face of Police and to ensure that police saw to its mandate of maintaining law and order in the country. It should be remembered that Kayihura ensured police reached the remotest parts of the country, officers were the first sign of government presence and under his leadership, the police headquarters were built and completed.
Kayihura’s fall, started when different Muslim leaders were killed in mysterious ways and when his assistant, Felix Kaweesi (RIP) was murdered in cold blood- many theories where thrown the media’s way as to what actually caused Kaweesi’s death but the truth never really got out. Things became sour with women killings in Entebbe and other surrounding areas.
However, several investigations remain unresolved including the murder of former Police spokesman, Andrew Felix Kaweesi, at least 12 Muslim clerics and the former Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Joan Kagezi among others.
Soon, Lt. Gen Henry Tumukunde decided to come in and clean the security of the nation (sadly, he was also sacked). Tumukunde started by cracking down the mafia, that had started terrorizing Ugandans, starting with the Kifeesi boys that were known for looting homes, cars, offices, at night and in broad day light. Then the group ‘Boda Boda 2010’ was also infiltrated through Tumukunde’s power. ‘Boda Boda 2010’ was a force which Kayihura trusted so much in terms of intelligence, however, the group had taken matters into their own hands and had started hurting, and killing people, they even had guns which they were not supposed to have- these cases are still being heard by the military court.
Lt. .Gen Henry Tumukunde and Gen. Kale Kayihura were replaced by Gen. Elly Tumwine as the Security Minister, and Mr Okoth Ochola as the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) who is to be deputised by Brig. Sabiiti Muzeei- respectively.
At the time of his exit, Kayihura leaves behind a force mired in internal fights, with unqualified personnel, broke and unable to pay its bills, a highly undisciplined force that will need a lot of cleansing. Needless to say, Mr. Okoth Ochola is almost of retirement age and his Deputy is from the arm of the Military tasked for keeping the President alive, Special Forces Command (SFC) which means that the President is hell bent of keeping power within his reach.
I would be mean not to acknowledge Gen. Kale Kayihura’s great work in the past years up until the time things started taking a sour turn, thank you for all those years of law and order- Not forgetting Lt. Gen. Henry Tumukunde whose works are visible and magnificent.
The sacking of these two security chiefs, leaves a heavy task on their predecessors to clean the different security agencies and ensure that things go back to normal, however, it’s not going to be an easy task. Mr. Martin Ochola Okoth has been Kayihura’s Deputy for over seven years and there is really no guarantee that things will change now that he is the top police chief.
The police has been left with over 126 Billion shillings in debt in utility bills, food supplies and fuel owed to police suppliers and this figure is estimated to keep growing as long as the suppliers keep supplying the force. The whole force might have to be poured/cut at least halfway and new recruitments done as many incompetent persons are at the helm of the force, moreover, there is still a backlog of cases and investigations that have not been looked into it’s definitely not going to be easy for this new duo.
This, in lay mans terms means that things are not going to be any different just yet about; there will continue to be power struggles between security organs,especially since police doesn’t have the financial capability to clean itself of these mess. The police sustainability highly depends on the leniency of other security agencies which also have other roles to play, unless all security agencies come into play, as we are yet to see the worse of security in our dear Uganda.