Monday , May 20 2024
Home / COLUMNISTS / Andrew Mwenda / THE LAST WORD: Why Kayihura remains IGP

THE LAST WORD: Why Kayihura remains IGP

In 2005, Kayihura was appointed IGP. Either deliberately or intuitively, Kayihura realised that the police could be the main centre of dealing with resistance to Museveni’s rule if its power structure were changed. So he fired the old guard who were nonpartisan (or even anti-NRM), or transferred them to nonstrategic positions. He hired new and young officers and placed only those who exhibited a partisan bias in favour of Museveni in charge of sensitive positions.

Hence, Kayihura’s most critical role has been to transform the police into an arm of the NRM. He secured for Museveni the loyalty of a major security institution that had been independent of NRM politics, hence reducing the role of the army in quelling protests. Kayihura did for Museveni what Central Bank governor, Emmanuel Tumusiime-Mutebile did for IMF. Mutebile converted Museveni into a free market ideologue, thereby turning a Marxist revolutionary into an agent of imperialism.

Finally and most importantly, Kayihura brought both the hard (the capacity to crash protests) and soft (the agility to infiltrate and co-opt leaders of protests) under one roof. He has performed soft roles by converting police into the centre of political intelligence gathering (remember the Amama Mbabazi tapes?). This intelligence role is not the professional variety even though that plays some role. It is what can be called “popular vigilance” i.e. individuals and groups with information about political schemes by the opposition and/or NRM insiders volunteer it to the police out of political loyalty as opposed to professional effort. This is typical of revolutionary movements of the NRA/M type.

This masterstroke significantly shrunk the role of ISO and CMI in the soft game of consolidating Museveni’s power. Kayihura’s success here has come at the price of reduced emphasis on criminal investigations, hence negatively impacting the rate of its professional development in the force.

However, overall Kayihura’s strategy has bolstered the position of the Uganda police politically, making it a powerful centre of power. This has led to a rapidly growing budget that has made it possible for police to perform other functions such as traffic policing, fire fighting, and even criminal investigations. It has opened the doors for police to become professional like UPDF. Pundits have ignored all this achievement because they obsess too much with the emphasis he has placed on regime maintenance.

Yet in the wider scheme of things, it is possible that without making it a political arm of the NRM, Kayihura would not have succeeded in building the police to its current logistical, manpower, and financial capacity. It is, therefore, possible that the politicisation and partisanisation of the police may have been the necessary short term price for its professionalisation and capacity development in the long term.



  1. Paul Kilimi Wanda

    Ya, Kayihura has done it well. But; as if he was appointed IGP in 2004 not 2005.

  2. Kayihura remains the IGP because his natural replacement and immediate opponent was killed on the 17/03/2017 it is as simple as that.

  3. 1.I like the way he NRM govt is grooming the young to take charge of the nation the current Army commander with his nice eyes and Kayihura with his cute smile are a clear sign that govt is preparing a good future for the nation.This trend is across all sectors in Uganda e.g;My good friend Ann is the Head of global markets at Stanbic Bank she is young i told her if she continues working in the Banking sector she will some day become Governor BOU(Bambi Musinguzi dont go looking for her)
    2.The camps in intelligence is meant to fail Kayihura coz he is the blue eyed boy of the govt you can tell by the look in his face that he means well.
    3. Rajab i am not surprised with your comments no wonder all suspects are Muslims like you.
    4.You can die of laughter if you attempt to understand Ugandans mbu they should extend the sim card registration by one year;to them banking money in the Bank is more risky than banking using mobile phones, these are the same guys who say they have nothing to do not even to spare time to register their phones lines,they claim they have no money but at the same time say they have alot of money on their mobile phones i hope the current hacking of companies ICT units will not affect the mobile money business.

    • “Rajab i am not surprised with your comments” sometimes my comments are beyond your everyday intellect.

      • “Kayihura remains the IGP because his natural replacement and immediate opponent was killed” so you want to tell us Kayihura was grooming his opponent? Or you want to deny Kayihura’s hand in the rise to power of the one who was killed on 17/03/2017?

        • Now Abe forgive kakyama. He is so poor when commenting on local current issues because there is no text book to copy from. Normally his narration would have gone like this: ” It is so alluded to in the thinking and publications by Prof Broadhead Williams that the augmentation of a retort thinking of the proletariat would have deeply impacted on generational gaps leadng to events like kaweesi murderers if the economy had not sank to its knees under the ruthless misadministration of the NRM and its cohorts,mistresses and proxies” From such Omeros would pick and continue thus: Now that you mention it Kakyama, I cannot help quoting karl marx when he was approached by freshmen at the University of Vienna in the fall of 1942 when asked about what is likely to transpire in the world economic flight of capital. He is reported by Dr Wilbrim Zigzag that he looked one freshman in the eye and answered with one word.” the state and the economy my son are intertwined, interlocked and are all asses.” Adhola would pick from there and proceed with the confusion….

      • Rajab since you claim you r so brilliant for mankind why are Muslims alone being linked to Kaweesi’s murder yet they are only 3% in ug? How come no Muslim leader has come to protest their arrest is it by coincidence or they also dont trust their flock?

        Ugandans have a habit of heaping praise on people when they are dead;they all criticised Mayombo, Kaweesi,Nyakarima when they were alive.

      • I was about to say the i wish she could have the guts to tell us her sir name…

  4. ejakait engoraton

    Whatever reasons one may advance, the one thing that it is NOT is MERIT.
    Most times when you try to advance reasons for ones suitability for a given post you look at that persons career, experience, qualifications in that or very closely related fields.
    In this case none of those apply and top of the list is the fact that he is willing and able to do his master’s bidding without any questions.
    He probably does more than what his master has required of him, service beyond the call of duty

    • So Mr Engoroton you say Kayihura did not merit the job? You want an officer that will question the boss’s orders? An officer questioning the boss’s orders leads to anarchy. I am sure you would not not tolerate that either

  5. ejakait engoraton

    Abe, we may not have anarchy, but we do have TYRANNY.
    Take your pick, but knowing the side you are on ( as sure as day turns into night, you are on the oppressor’s side) I know what your pick is.

  6. Abe, I have two words for you- that is “marriage” and “divorce.” Hope I answered you.

  7. Collins NYAKOOJO

    IGP kaihura to me has done so well to suppress n Saphocated the Opposition. To his boss, he has surpassed his set targets. If u were his boss after an appraisal, wouldn’t u give him another chance?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *