Kasese- The Inspector General of Police, Gen Kale Kayihura, has said he does not fear facing the International Criminal Court if the Opposition goes ahead to drag him to the Hague-based court.
Gen Kayihura, in an interview with this paper, said he was tired of his detractors and the Opposition using the ICC as a ‘scare crow’ to intimidate him.
He further advised those pushing him to face prosecution at ICC to do so if they have evidence as he is ready to challenge them.
“You see there were comments all over the place oh ICC oh ICC, they used it like a sword over my neck as though to threaten me and so I really got angry, go ahead if you think I have a case to answer I will defend myself and that is why I said,” Gen Kayihura said.
Outspoken Kyadondo East legislature Ibrahim Ssemuju Nganda, one of those who have long said Gen Kayihura should face the ICC, told this paper yesterday that the IGP shouldn’t be worried about ICC but rather should be answerable to Ugandans.
Gen Kayihura last month while passing out new community police trainees in Kisoro District said he was not afraid to defend himself.
In the second part of the exclusive interview with Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura.
The military general tells Daily Monitor’s Richard Wanambwa why is not worried about threats to take him to the ICC.
The full interview
There are allegations that the Police force under your leadership is conflicting with other security agencies especially Internal Security Organisation and the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence over deployment and resources?
But where is that coming from? We work very well. First of all police is the lead agency in internal security operations and that is why you find the Minister of Internal Affairs is the chairman of the National Security Committee on behalf of the President who is the chairman of the National Security Council. At operational level, the IGP is the chairman of the Inter-Agency Committee which includes all these agencies. Where is this conflict and who is saying there is conflict?
There are reports that much of the budget which used to fund activities of these security and intelligence agencies has been diverted to Police and these agencies are stuck without operational funds.
The budget of CMI is under the Ministry of Defence, the budget of security and intelligence services is under the Ministry of Security which is under President’s Office while the budget of police is under the Ministry of Internal Affairs. We are completely mutually exclusive in terms of budgeting. And I can tell you that I have not been given any preferential treatment and whatever extra resources we have got is because we were allowed to retain our non-tax revenue which we generate from fines, express penalty and whatever and again because of our ability to lobby for resources.
We have increased our numbers from 18,000 to over 40,000. So, the wage bill automatically has to go up and that is it. So where is the conflict? I have read this in newspapers and I actually don’t want to believe that the source of such information is these agencies because they know better. Maybe what they can blame me for is that the police force is now more effective than it has ever been in a longtime. For instance, the Anti Stock Theft Unit had been taken over by the army because the police was weak but I have since brought it back. When I came in, Kampala was being manned by the Military Intelligence that was present on streets because the police was not effective. But as police capacity is built, they are becoming less visible and if that is what I am being accused of, I plead guilty that I am making the police effective and I can tell you as long as I am in charge, I am going to make the police more effective. We all have our roles that are defined by the Constitution. If what I am being accused of is departing from what the Constitution mandates the Police to do, then I would understand.
What do you think is the basis of such reports?
I don’t want to go into that because that is Wolokoso (baseless talk) and I don’t want to go into those personalities and I don’t want to believe that this is coming from them. We work closely and in fact we have taken it further and we have introduced a new system to really improve our security coordination which we are calling Joint Operation Centre (JOC). Those spreading all this talk are detractors and I don’t want to believe that there is a professional officer who can come to you and if they do, those must have their own confusion.
The role of police in any country is the most visible and if you see the army patrolling in a city, then you know there is trouble because the army comes in when things are really bad; but ordinarily, it should be the police. The problem was that in the past, police was weak but today and I am proud to say that the police has never been more effective than today. If people want to crucify me over it, Jesus Christ was crucified and I know that I will go to heaven.
What do you have to say about allegations by the Opposition and now Ms Jackie Mbabazi that you are cracking on demonstrators and that you could go down as the worst IGP?
I don’t want to go into what people said about me, they are entitled to their opinion and you cannot take their opinion from them but the record is different and for me I am hardened and really excited that the youth corrected the record, and said no; he (Kayihura) is not Afande Teargas but he is Afande Community Policing. And I have just come from Kabalye Masindi District, where 3,000 students from different universities and tertiary institutions are undergoing crime prevention course and that is the demon or IGP that you can have. If you come to my office you will see all sorts of mankind trying to see me and why do they come if I am bad?
In the past, I am told that wasn’t the case and so for me, I just do my work and let posterity judge me and I will not engage in debates that somebody called me Afande Teargas because that is their business. They have called me names and that is not my problem, for me I just do my work.
The other day the Omusinga of Rwenzururu refered to me as comrade and he is appreciative of the role I am playing here. Every time when problems crop up, the very people who are calling me all sorts of names ask for help from me. They say please send us the police.
Your contract ends in November this year; do you expect to be re-appointed?
I have said this before, my mindset is to serve the country and wherever the appointing authority decides to deploy me, I will serve. I work out of conviction not for money or that I want glory. It is not money, it is not glory, it is really effective service that you have improved an institution that you have executed the assignment you were given to the best of your ability and it is visible.
I was excited during the International Youth Day in Moroto last week when the Bishop was advising the Karamongs to join armed forces. The President also stated that we (government) have built the army and the police. Previously, he used to say we have built the army. You can see these young people on police parade, they are very impressive and that is what makes me believe that I have made a contribution. However modest the contribution, I have made it and if the appointing authority thinks that I should continue serving, I have no problem.
Under the current arrangement do you see any person in Police who can replace you?
You see there are things that you talk about freely in the media but there are others that you don’t discuss and it is not about me choosing. Remember it is the President who does so after being advised by the police authority. So, it is really not my business. If one asked my opinion about any officer, the records of professional service for all officers is there and really I don’t want to engage myself in such discussion.
Sometime back you were quoted saying that you don’t fear the International Criminal Court (ICC). What makes you confident that you cannot be paraded at the ICC?
You see there were comments all over the place oooh ICC, ooooh ICC, they used it like a sword over my neck to threaten me and I really got pissed off and told them to go ahead if they think I have a case to answer. I will defend myself and that is why I said.