By Asan Kasingye
Thank you all. I appreciate your concern and deep seated frustration about what you call criminality in Police. I appreciate too that many of our colleagues, both senior and junior have thrown their attestations to the wind and failed to protect lives and properties of Ugandans and other people living in this country. Some of us, feel ashamed of this.
However, allow me to say this. It is almost fashionable at this point in time, for anybody to randomly define us as failures, criminals, goons, and any other vice you can think of. I am sure, that you are aware of so many positive things that officers, men and women of the Police have done.
I am aware, that you judge us against the highest quality of service we must render and not to exalt us. But, some of us who wake up every morning, put on the khaki uniform or in cheap civilian attire and come to offices, streets, allays, roads, parks, forests etc, we bleed with this unfairness.
Indeed, many of our officers, inspite of the little pay, stand on road sides to save Ugandans from accidents. Others read intelligence reports to forestall terror threats. Others investigate criminal cases and have gotten many convictions. Others go to schools to sensitize your little ones of the dangers of crime.
While others counsel many challenged marriages and enstranged relationships for the happiness they enjoy later.
I am sure, you read about heroics of our officers in war torn countries. East Timor, Liberia, South Sudan, Somalia etc. They have created positive change into the many lives of children women and vulnerable groups.
We work day and night through night patrols, in coldness and torrent rain to protect you as you quietly rest. We have recovered lost properties, reunited missing persons, abducted relatives etc with their loved ones. We have protected businesses, tourists, travelers, party goers etc as they do their businesses.
We search everyone as before they go about their businesses in shopping malls, worship centers, catch their flights etc for everyone’s security. We rush to fire scenes to save lives, some of our policemen get involved in road accidents, fall off boats etc. We protect your loved politicians and other VIPs. I can go on and on.
Do you find this important? Do you think it’s in order to call us criminal? Can’t the intelligentsia find a way of positively criticizing without random condemnation?
Lest I forget, I will remain proud of my 29 years service to Ugandans. I will always raise my head high. I am not a criminal, nor do i serve a criminal Police. I know, at least my family, who see me off every morning and sometimes not see me in weeks, are proud of me!
For God and My Country.
The writer is an Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP) and the Chief Political Commissar in Uganda Police Force.