Police Issues Tougher Guidelines for Security Firms

Private security guards being driven to their stations of deployment

Police have announced tougher guidelines for private security firms aimed at tightening the noose on easy access to guns in the wake of a rise in killings in the country recently.

Deputy Police Spokesperson Polly Namaye said all security companies must adhere to the new guidelines or risk closure.

In an interview at the police head office in Naguru, a Kampala suburb, on April 2, Namaye said: “If these companies fail to meet the required standards, the area policing commander like the division police commander (DPC) may recommend the closure of a particular company.”

According to the new guidelines, all guns in the hands of private security companies must be marked or labelled.

“Their [private security companies] guns would be marked with police seal numbers for easy identification in case they are involved in any crime. We are doing this to fight crime in the country,” Namaye said.

And all armouries of security companies, she said, will be supervised by police and all fire arms submitted to the DPC, to know the active and non-active guns.

“Police would be in charge of supervision of the day-to-day operations of private security companies. And all guards who would be involved in criminal activity would be prosecuted,” Namaye said.

She added that all training centres of private security companies would be licensed by police and recruitment will be supervised by police. Namaye said many private security companies recruit guards randomly without proper documentation.

“Many guards have been involved in various crimes ranging from robbery to murder. And many companies leave their guards to move with guns and bullets which is so dangerous to people’s lives,” she said.

Namaye said all private security companies must use approved independent uniforms, unique to that firm for easy identification. Security companies are also required to store all vital information about their workers in electronic form. This will speed up the process of accessing information by the Criminal Investigations and Intelligence Directorate (CIID).

The new measures come in the wake of the brutal murder of acting Assistant Director of Public Prosecution Joan Namazzi Kagezi last week. Kagezi was fatally shot by men riding on a boda boda on the night of March 31 in Kiwatule, a Kampala suburb.

The huge proliferation of small arms in the country has been cited as the cause for the spike in killings. There are over 80 private security companies in Uganda, providing security for both private and public officials. MPs have asked police chief Kale Kayihura to find the source of the guns used by the killers.

Source : The Observer

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