General Kale Kayihura has today officially handed over the office of Inspector General of Police to his successor, Martin Okoth Ochola.
At a ceremony at the Uganda Police Force headquarters in Naguru, Kampala, the curtain came down on Kayihura’s over 12 years as the head of Uganda’s law enforcement agency. He said he will remain a loyal soldier of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) and a cadre in the struggle to liberate Uganda.
He thanked President Yoweri Museveni for trusting him and elevating him to the top, not just in the police, but in the army where he rose through the ranks to become a General.
President Museveni on March 4 replaced Kayihura with his deputy, Okoth Ochola.
Gen. Elly Tumwine took over as Minister for security, replacing Lt. Gen. Henry Tumukunde. The former military Police commandant, Brig. Sabiiti Muzeei takes over as deputy Inspector General of Police.
Kayihura regretted his failures during the last 12 years as the head of the Police Force, but spoke confidently about his tenure as the police boss noting that he leaves behind a better force than what he inherited in November 2005.
“During my tenure as IGP, I may have fallen short in my assignment and that I deeply regret. But that is human and it is not due to lack of trying.
Perhaps to signal that he’s out of the police force, Kayihura turned up dressed in his full military General’s uniform.
Despite his expression of regret, he outlined his achievements with confidence, only attributing his failure to the bad image in the force over the “last one year or so.”
“Apart from the recent bad image which I will not be tempted to speak about its source, I am leaving a better police than I found,” Kayihura said.
As he summarised his 20-paged handover report, the incoming IGP and his deputy Brigadier Sabiiti Muzeei looked on.
At some statements, Okoth Ochola laughed heartily while Sabiiti Muzeei maintained a serious face and made note of all key issues in his diary.
Kayihura apologised to whoever he may have hurt or wronged during his time as IGP, but noted that he did that in his line of duty, not personally. He thanked all the people he worked with from the ministers and senior civil servants to cleaners and those who served him tea.
All the other police directors watched on as Kayihura made a 30-minute statement.
The handover ceremony began in a closed-door session at the IGP’s office wing with only the Ministers, General Odong and State Minister Obiga Kania, witnessing the handover from Kayihura to Okoth Ochola and Brigadier Sabiiti.
Like has been his culture, once the first session was over and all others joined the waiting officers in the main boardroom, Kayihura kept them waiting for about five minutes before he majestically marched through the corridors greeting people.
In a light mood, he asked journalists who had stood to take his pictures how he looked in his military attire.