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Kayihura was building personal force, new IGP tells MPs

Incoming IGP Martin Okoth-Ochola is welcomed to Parliament by SP Anabera Nyiramahoro the Divisional Commander Parliament police on Wednesday.

Incoming Inspector General of Police, Martin Okoth Ochola has blamed his predecessor Gen Kale Kayihura for the mess in the police Force.

Speaking to the vetting committee at Parliament where he appeared Wednesday morning to defend his appointment, the career policeman said the manner in which his former boss disrespected structures in the Force caused indiscpline and anarchy.

Sources told PML Daily that Mr Ochola cited an incident when he ordered for the arrest of Kampala Metropolitan South police commander Siraj Bakaleke, who had been named in incidents of indiscpline, but Gen Kayihura ordered for the immediate release of Mr Bakaleke.

Mr Ochola promised the committee that he would work with the top management in the institution to ensure that they clean the police image.

KMP South police commander Siraj Bakaleke.

Last month, Mr Bakaleke was named in a police investigation of its officers who allegedly extorted about Shs1.4 billion from two South Korean nationals.

Mr Vincent Ssekate, the spokesperson of the Professional Standards Unit (PPS), said some of the implicated officers were detained at Nalufenya Detention Facility while others had recorded statements.

Sources said then that  Bakaleke, who is alleged to have masterminded the scheme, recorded a statement on February 13, in relation to the matter and was released on police bond.

However, Bakaleke has denied making any statement in relation to the incident, insisting that his appearance at PPU was part of his normal operational reporting procedures. The Kampala Metropolitan police also described as fake news allegations that Mr Bakaleke has been arrested over the matter.

New deputy IGP Brig Sabitti Muzeyi Magenyi arrives at Parliament for vetting on Wednesday.

Mr Okoth-Ochola, his deputy, Brig Sabiti Muzeyi, and Security minister Elly Tumwine were Wednesday flagged off to formally start work after their presidential appointments were approved by Parliament.

The appointments were approved in closed door sessions by Parliament’s Appointments Committee.

Sources told this website that of the trio, Mr Ochola faced the most scrutiny.

Sources added that Mr Ochola said his former boss circumvented the police recruiting processes and chose to appoint young officers who only reported to him.

Okoth-Ochola refused to speak to journalists after leaving the committee.

On his part, Gen Tumwiine was reportedly quizzed on how he intends to ensure cooperation between security agencies such as ISO and police given the friction between his predecessor Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde and Gen Kayihura.

However, he reportedly assured the MPs that he will always front dialogue above everything.

After leaving the committee room, he told journalists he intends to streamline cooperation with police.

“All of us, using the goodwill I see, [should] come together and work for our country together instead of doing it in a divided way. Where we have hitches, we always correct them and that (bickering) will be streamlined. We have a good team to work with. We shall end it,” Gen Tumwine said.

On the other hand, Brig Muzeyi was tasked to explain how he will adjust to police work when he is a military officer.

He refused to speak to the press after leaving the committee.  “When all is done, we shall arrange and we talk. I am ready for the office,” he said.

Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga and other committee members listen to Security minister Gen Elly Tumwine as he presents his credential during the vetting at Parliament on Wednesday.

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