President Museveni has declared two million crime preventers all over the country a reserve army, saying they can actively be involved in detection and prevention of crime as well as acting as the reserve force in case the country is under attack.
Addressing coordinators of crime preventers at the MTN arena in Lugogo on Wednesday, the President said he personally conceived the idea of crime preventers and that he is not about to discard it.
“I now regard you as a reserve army for UPDF. My idea is to have a small army which is equipped but with a big reserve. In the role of detecting crime, I need to sit down with ring leaders to see how to handle it, criminals operate mainly in villages. If you’ve not yet developed village coordinators, you should because it’s easy to know how many houses there are,” he said.
Mr Museveni scoffed at those accusing former IGP Kale Kayihura of spearheading the programme.
“Anybody who had an idea that this was a Kayihura project, please get it out of your head. But Kayihura was an active cadre who executed that aspect and I congratulate him,” he said.
The President also urged the crime preventers to spearhead poverty eradication programmes.
“Apart from preventing crime, you should be exemplary actors in poverty eradication in your homes, become the example. Don’t be the one in a bar with swollen cheeks like a ripe banana, let your light shine. Your leaders should work with Police and operation wealth creation. We maybe need one crime preventer per parish to serve as an example for the rest,” he said.
The National Coordinator for crime preventers, Mr Blaise Kamugisha told Mr Museveni that as they did in the 2016 general elections, they will always be ready to protect him and canvass for him votes.
“We played an important role in the last election. We did not only protect the vote but we also voted,” Mr Kamugisha said.