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    Museveni And The Fight For The Soul Of Police…

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    As UPDF is busy smoking out the ADF terrorists in the jungles of Congo, President Yoweri Museveni is initiating a fresh tidying up of the methods of the Police and security organs in the way they handle and interact both with the masses and criminal elements.

    Of great interest in his cleanup strategy is to rid the forces of any traces of application of torture as a means to extract confessions from suspects in custody.

    In official communications to security chiefs he described torture as “traditional” and “unnecessary and wrong and must not be used again if it was being used as I see some groups claiming in the media”.

    By traditional, the president elaborates that the use of torture on suspected criminals (okutatsya) in the fight against crime was not only commonly used in our traditional societies but was accepted and encouraged. Yet like other traditional practices that had their own mistakes, and such ideas not in consonance with logic should be abandoned.

    In an enlightened world where investigators are equipped with top notch skills of evidence gathering and the availability of modern gadgets like the now famous CCVTs, who needs torture? It is extra to necessity and a grim reminder of how far set we are from the old and troubled Uganda of pre-1986.

    The UPDF’s presence in Congo was not informed by vague information extracted from captured terrorists; it was informed by accurate intelligence and leads from years of one clue leading to another until the climax during last year’s Kampala bombings that left no doubt as to who had been terrorising Ugandans all along. That is why the army’s presence in Congo is justified and accurate even in its precision on where to hit and how. It’s why the Congolese Government willingly partnered in the operations. Was the Congolese government tortured to make that move? No! They understand our methods and trust them. Ugandans should, the better, trust Museveni with his methods even when, sometimes, they seem slow.

    Apart from expressly barring the use of torture, the president wants security organs (police) to be most humane in managing public gatherings and using proper methods of arresting suspects or subduing them in case they are resisting arrest by, for example, overpowering them, and handling them, while in custody. The basis for his move is the “fundamental starting point of the NRA principle of being an army of the people, but also serving well the law-abiding foreigners that visit Uganda”.

    The president is considerate to the extent that he bars security personnel from beating or pushing back people using their open palms, barking at them and, much less, applying tools of coercion on them when they are not endangering anybody’s life, or property. He advises politely restraining them and getting them to cooperate with law and order managers who are their “brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, uncles, aunties, cousins, in-laws, friends, etc”.

    The president calls for strict adherence with the law and UN guidelines on the use of force and urges law-abiding Ugandans to take note of and support these measures because they are for their own good. I trust that if his guidance is taken seriously, we are going to see a better, pro-people police force that can independently fight crime and win the confidence of law-abiding Ugandans.

    So far so good as far as the President’s heart and mind goes! Amidst this mindset and operational reform and improvement in policing and civil-security relations, there stands something I could call the elephant in the room. This animal is unacknowledged by those who benefit from its presence while others appear to underestimate its influence on the security status at play. That is the role of spoiler groups that call themselves opposition but are, rather, selfish and sadistic actors without regard to the general tranquility and individual wellbeing of Ugandans, but while pretending to care and fight for their rights.

    These actors are mainly in the political arena, using the cover of free democratic practice to create a semblance of anarchy and total absence of civil rights in Uganda. They do this by failing to live up to standards as law-abiding players in national affairs and competitors with NRM who can win and lose some, and become anarchists looking to plunge the country into total turmoil from which they have the luxury of detaching themselves to go and be with their foreign sponsors. Without naming who, I know most Ugandans know these actors of illwill. They must stop abusing the conscience and reasonability of Ugandans, and playing on the minds of donors who bankroll their evil activities of hoodwinking citizens and setting them up in provocative situations with security and wish each other to cause bloodshed!

    Yes, sometimes mistakes happen in policing operations but those are typically operational and isolated and usually the responsible officers are held accountable. Even then, the violations do not happen out of the blue; they happen when those caught in those situations defy instructions of police in a way that communicates an active motive to both challenge authority and harm the lives and property of Ugandans.

    If anybody is unfairly treated, as happens world over, there is always a way for redress but the cure is for those who need their rights respected and protected to respect the rights of others and know their limits and portion in building a country that is safe and works for all.

    As a side note: Constitutionally, the President is the Commander-In-Chief (C-I-C) of the UPDF. Most people take it that he is the C-I-C of (all) armed forces including police and prisons. For the sake of Bazzukulu’s understanding, given his long established yearning to reform all armed forces and how they relate with citizens, what is at stake if he simply becomes C-I-C of all armed forces? Could police’s problems have to do with the “indirect” nature of command that the president has with the force?

     

    Faruk Kirunda is the Deputy Presidential Press Secretary
    Contact: faruk.kirunda@statehouse.go.ug
    0776980486/0702980486

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    NATIONAL

    Tension Between Kooki And Buganda Kingdom: Security Arrests Kabaka’s Chiefs Carrying Out An ‘Illegal’ Activity In Kamuswaga’s Territory…

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    There is tension between the Kingdom of Buganda and the Kkooki Chiefdom after security arrested Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi’s  top chiefs for trespassing on the territory of Apollo Sansa Kabumbuli, the traditional head of Kooki Chiefdom.

    Julius Mpande, the Officer in Charge Rakai police Station confirmed the arrest and detention of Gertrude  Nakalanzi Ssebugwawo, the coordinator of Buganda Kingdom programmes in Kkooki Chiefdom, Joseph Mutyaba, Kabaka’s representative in Kabura county (Lumama), Paul Mwanje and Willy Kiyaga who were recently appointed by Kabaka as Kyarurangira Sub County chief and deputy respectively.

    Mpande insists that the suspects were arrested carrying out an illegal act of installing Kabaka’s new appointees without informing the leadership of Kamuswaga, a legal independent cultural institution.

    “Kkooki is an independent institution according to the documents we have and if those people were doing the right thing, I wonder why they had to hide in the bushes to perform their function” he said.

    He revealed that the arrest of Kabaka’s chiefs was done to help save the region from any bloodshed which would have resulted from the fight between Kamuswaga’s royalists and Kabaka’s representatives.

    Kamuswaga’s people were planning to attack Kabaka’s chiefs.

    Mpande added that it was wrong for Buganda Kingdom chiefs to carry out cultural activities without informing the leadership of an independent chiefdom.

    He was supported by Kkooki’s deputy prime minister Godfrey Kimbugwe who accused Buganda Kingdom officials of undermining their chiefdom well knowing that it is an independent cultural institution.

    “We are a cultural institution recognised under the laws of Uganda, why do Buganda Kingdom officials keep undermining us to the extent of sending delegations to perform activities in our area without our knowledge?” Kimbugwe said.

    However, Buganda Kingdom spokesperson Noor Kiyimba rubbished the allegations against their kingdom chiefs.

    Kiyimba maintained that installing Sub County Chiefs in any of Kabaka’s Counties is normal and nothing illegal was done. He wondered where security got powers to arrest Kabaka’s men.

    Buganda has been in a silent war with Kkooki and in 2018, Kooki Chiefdom attempted to stop Buganda’s premier Charles Peter Mayiga from visiting the area claiming that he was not given permission from the Kamuswaga to visit his cultural institution.

    Kkooki has always accussed Buganda of breaching the 1896 agreement signed between the two cultural institutions. They claim they are bigger than a mere county.

    In the heat of the disagreement, Buganda reminded Kooki that the 1896 agreement states that Kamuswaga has to pledge allegiance to the Buganda king.

    In 2016, Kkooki banned the singing of the Buganda Kingdom anthem at all functions in their territories.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    Gov’t Set To Ban Import Of Bodabodas Over Criminality….

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    The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives is set to introduce a ban on the importation of bodabodas into the country.

    Speaking to CBS radio, Harriet Ntabazi the State Minister for Trade revealed that this proposal is soon going to be introduced before cabinet for discussion.

    She said that the movers of the said proposal are concerned about the number of boda bodas entering the country.

    She added that many of these boda bodas were brought in illegally via porous borders so that they can be used in committing criminalities especially robbery.

    Minister Ntabazi said that when the cabinet buys the proposal, it will be subjected to parliament for perusal and Members of Parliament will debate about it.

    She was supported by Kampala Metropolitan minister Hajjat Minsa Kabanda who said that the process of regulating bodaboda business in Kampala is in the pipeline and very soon it will be implemented.

    She disclosed that bodabodas without stages will not be allowed to operate in the city since such cannot be easily traced in case of any wrongdoing.

    “They will not be chased out of the city, we just want to regulate their business and movement,” Kabanda said.

    In his last address to the nation, president Yoweri Museveni revealed that bodabodas have many problems.

    Even though he removed curfew, he stayed it for bodabodas.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    Lands Minister Nabakooba Wants Courts To Deny Land Grabbers Bail…

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    The Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Hon. Judith Nabakooba has proposed a new land law stopping the granting of bail to land grabbers.

    Hon. Nabakooba also proposed that the sentences for land grabbers should be harsh so that other would be culprits are not tempted to mistreat and grab other people’s land.

    The Minister also noted that such proposals and more are included in a comprehensive report which they are working on which they will soon table before President Museveni.

    Nabakooba recently decided to embark on a field tour of rural communities in Central Uganda handling several cases of land evictions.

    During the tours, she has halted several land evictions and ordered the arrest of some of the culprits.

    “It seems Ugandans have completely lost respect for the law. Because back in the day, land evictions used to be straight forward. One went and obtained a court order. But even after getting one, they would not proceed with the eviction right away, they first consulted local leaders and engaged the law enforcement officers,” she said.

    Hon. Nabakooba added, “These days, someone gets a lawyer’s letter and then gives people two weeks to leave. I found this in Mubende. Others just come with soldiers and claim ownership of land even before the land title has been transferred to their names.”

    She also noted that even the soldiers and police who enforce these evictions are not doing so on behalf of government adding that some of them are just immoral government officials.

    “So, when you approach them and bribe them they will do your bidding without even informing their seniors,” the minister said.

     

    By Hope Kalamira

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