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Opposition and its Hypocrisy over Gen. Kale Kayihura

Ofwono Opondo
  June 21, 18   
There is negative excitement doing the rounds that former Inspector General of Police (IGP), Gen. Kale Kayihura, is, perhaps, going through poetic justice, having been previously praised many times by President Yoweri Museveni as a “good cadre” of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) revolution. 
Indeed, Kayihura has been a good national cadre who was resolute in carrying out the revolutionary line for a long time, and has perhaps fallen in the course of duty because it isn’t easy to do good all through one's life and act consistently in the interests of the broad masses, and never do anything wrong. Therefore, we must know how to judge cadres, and not merely confine ourselves to a short period or few incidents in their lives.
Usually, people with a short record of struggle may shirk responsibility, while veterans become obstinate because of their long record, and perhaps this eventually brings them down. Some critics of Kayihura who has been in detention for a week now, seem to be celebrating that the forty-eight hours for holding suspects without production in courts of law which he had advocated be amended to provide sufficient time for investigations has now caught up with him.
President Museveni knows how to train, mentor and take good care of cadres and non cadres from NRM as well as many from other political parties who choose to work with him to build Uganda. Firstly, President Museveni appoints and deploys them, gives guidance, allows them a free hand in their work so that they have the courage to assume responsibility and, at the same time, offering them timely instructions. Second, he gives them the opportunity to study to enhance and integrate theory and practical work ability. Third, he is very patient, checks on their work and corrects their mistakes. In many meetings I have attended, President Museveni has always explained that he is patient with people who make mistakes and prefers to help them correct their ways  if they are willing and ready, than rush to condemn or discard them because every human being is prone to make mistakes. It’s this patience, which many unfortunately interpret as President Museveni’s tolerance for mistakes.
The same political and media voices that had for a long time called on Kayihura to resign over police brutality, and with others asking that he should be investigated and sent to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged crimes against humanity, are now taking opportunistic postures pretending to be his possible allies.
However, these critics tend to forget that no one is above the law in Uganda. According to the fundamentals of NRM, security is the back bone and whoever destabilizes the peace of Ugandans, ought to be subjected to the courts of law and so Gen. Kale Kayihura’s arrest and detention should not be a surprise. Previously we saw Gen. Moses Ali, Gen. James Kazini, Vice President Gilbert Bukenya, and a number of ministers put in detention and prosecuted in courts of law for different offences
Last year, while attending the vigil of assassinated Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP), Andrew Felix Kaweesi, the President said that the police had been infiltrated by criminals and the IGP needed to clean his house. It however seemed that Kayihura was indecisive or didn’t the President’s directive, and it is at that point that other security agencies came in to help the police in cleaning its own house. In addition, in June last year, the president vowed to deal with any police officer  involved in criminal activities as long as he gets the right information pinning that security officer.  Since then, we have witnessed a number of arrests and prosecution of some police officers linked to various crimes, among them, Nixon Asingwire, Joel Aguma, Faisal Katende, and Abdullah Kitata, the patron of the Boda Boda 2010, a riff-raff transport outfit.
Many critics, especially from the opposition have come up to show unqualified sympathy towards Gen. Kayihura yet they were the very ones who over the years demanded that he should be sacked and prosecuted for alleged police brutality against civilians. On several occasions, the opposition and Civil Society groups tried to prosecute Kayihura in courts of law and even said he shouldn’t be tried in Uganda but instead be taken to the International Criminal Court (ICC). It is therefore diabolical that at this time, the person whom they aggressively vilified is the very one they pretend to sympathize with. It is also hypocritical because they always accuse President Museveni of not taking action on the so-called ‘big fish’. 
We should restate that a broad section of the public had lost confidence in the institution of police regarding its conduct characterized by high-handedness, mass arrests, torture of suspects, inconclusive investigations, delay to produce suspects in the courts of law, and open extortion among others. The NRM government seeks to and indeed must ensure that public confidence is restored in the police as a law enforcement agency dealing with the public on a daily basis, and to do so, it has to weed out the wrong elements from the institution.