Julius Odwe, the retired former deputy inspector general of police, has said corruption and crime within the force’s ranks are endemic because it is starved of resources.
Speaking recently at the launch of the national dialogue on policing in Uganda by an NGO, Facilitation for Peace and Development (FAPAD) , at Grand Imperial hotel in Kampala, Odwe said: “Police doesn’t have enough resources to fight corruption. Many officers in the districts don’t have resources, which tempts them into corruption.
In 1986 government used to raise revenue of Shs 5bn. But in 2015, I saw the government’s budget at Shs 1.2 trillion and police is not well financed.”
He said policemen and women in the districts needed direct funding. He said money requests from the police headquarters take long to process and reach the recipients.
Odwe said there is too much revenue collected in the country but little services rendered yet police need much government support. James Nkuubi, an activist from Huriet Uganda, said police claim they don’t have enough resources but they waste lots of resources on suppressing peoples’ rights and freedoms instead of supporting developmental issues.
“A lot of money is wasted on teargas to suppress opposition parties and many senior officers at the rank of DPCs [district police commanders] are corrupted since they can’t decide anything without commands from above,” he said.
Benson Oyo Nyeko, Uganda police’s deputy director for human resource management, warned village council chairmen against recommending criminals for recruitment into the police. He said such dubious recommendations have increased crime in the country.
“Many local council chairmen recommend criminals to join police because they want to get rid of them in the village yet they are killing the force. We are going to be very strict in the next recruitment to avoid recruiting criminals,” he said.
The police chief political commissar, Asuman Mugenyi, urged people to be more security conscious and always use crime preventers in their villages to protect them.
“The president last week passed out 30,000 crime preventers in Ntungamo district to fight the theft of cattle and food within the area. Ntungamo now has got a database to register all new people in the district to be able to track criminals who come as visitors and after disappear after stealing cattle,” Mugenyi said.