KAMPALA – Police has declared Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Jonathan Baroza, a deserter and is in the process of freezing payments to his bank account.
Baroza, a former aide to Gen Kale Kayihura was given an ultimatum of five days to report to Kampala or be declared a deserter after he abandoned his duty station in Algeria on June 17, under unclear circumstances.
Mr Baroza was posted to Algeria as Uganda Police Force attache by detained Gen Kale Kayihura, after some sections of the society linked him to the murder of police spokesperson Andrew Felix Kaweesi.
He was recalled to Police Headquarters in Kampala for redeployment but he allegedly disappeared in Turkey while in transit to Kampala, prompting police to issue a five-day ultimatum on July 17 for him to report without fail.
Several of Kayihura’s associates have also been arrested and according to Police sources, Baroza was to be arrested at Entebbe airport on arrival.
The Police Policy and Advisory committee on which the Inspector General of Police, his deputy, the Undersecretary and all directors sit, resolved on Wednesday last week, to halt all payments to Baroza’s accounts including allowances and salary.
There are also claims that Baroza is wanted by CMI for investigations into various crimes including illegal repatriation of Rwandan refugees.
He was summoned to Police headquarters early this year where he recorded a statement and was asked to return to his duty station in Algeria.
Baroza is also under investigation by the Inspectorate General of Government on how he was promoted from the rank of Superintendent of Police to Assistant Commissioner of Police while working as Kayihura’s personal assistant.
Police spokesperson Emilian Kayima says, after the five days ultimatum action against Baroza will be taken.
“Appropriate action will be taken now that he has not been seen. You can refer to the communication before,” Kayima said.
The IGP Okoth Ochola said the Police would search for Baroza everywhere in and outside Uganda.
“You see, Baroza was posted to Algeria as a liaison officer in Afripol. Now, where an officer abandons his duty station, as his supervisors we are supposed to know where he is. It’s our duty to look for him. What is the problem? We want to know what has gone berserk with him. That is why we’ve got to look for him,” said Ochola.
Desertion is criminal and an arrest warrant is usually issued to all investigating officers to arrest such an officer on sight. Article 59(1) of the Police Act states: A person who deserts the service in the force commits an offence and is liable to conviction by a criminal court to imprisonment for one year.
It also says that an officer is declared a deserter when he or she is absent from duty without authority for a continuous period of 21 days.