“Don’t Delay My Electronic Number Plates” Says H.E Gen Museveni As He Passes Out 2,717 Police And Immigration Officers At Kabalye.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni continues to insist and express trust in the digital motor number plates project, saying it will be vital in fighting criminality in Uganda.

“I’m now insisting on the electronic number plates. Please, I want my number plates. Don’t delay my number plates. I don’t want these aimless number plates. I want intelligent number plates for the vehicles and for the cars,” the President said.

He made the remarks on Wednesday 15th November 2023 while presiding over the pass out ceremony of 2,717 newly trained Probational Police Constables, Special Police Constables and Immigration Officers at Kabalye Police Training School in Masindi District.

Of these, a total of 1,272 are Probational Police Constables 23rd intake, 1,388 Special Police Constables on integration course 1st intake, and 57 Immigration Officers who have been undergoing rigorous training for 12 months, 4 months and 2 months respectively.

Gen. Museveni noted that the electronic number plates will significantly close the criminality gap especially terrorism, now that the force is using all the comprehensive means and assets at their disposal to defeat criminals.

“You will see these terrorists who have been killing people from Congo. We are going to finish them. I have told them; we’re going to kill all of them. We have everything needed,” the President noted.

He said the recent killers of tourists in the Queen Elizabeth National Park would have been captured quickly if the work was not mismanaged by the army.

“They came to trace using their eyes at the scene of crime. They could have brought a police dog to follow. I rang people on ground some hours after and the dog followed the criminals for 15kms. We got those people much later,” Gen Museveni added, calling upon the new police officers to use all the capabilities at their disposal such as the eyes, the witnesses, the cameras, the police dogs, the telephones and the forensics to get to the bottom of criminality.

The Government officially launched the Digital Number Plates on November 2nd with the first phase targeting government-owned vehicles. The Ministry of Works and Transport and the Ministry of Security are overseeing the project.

Through the Ministry of Works and Transport and the Ministry of Security, the government agreed to a 10-year deal with the Russian company to install digital tracking chips in all automobile number plates registered in the country, under the Intelligent Transport Management Systems program- ITMS.

The President who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Uganda People’s Defense Forces welcomed the new Officers into the Force and thanked the Police leadership for rebuilding the Uganda Police Force to the current 53,000 personnel up from 3,000 personnel in 1986 after its reorganization. He however said this should be bigger to about 92,000 to match the international policing ratio of one police man for every 500 people.

“When I come to these pass outs, I feel very happy when I see very many young people joining these forces moreover when they’re well educated. This makes training very easy as educated people can learn faster,” the President further noted.

He told the new recruits to count themselves lucky that they are joining such a prestigious force and urged them to ensure discipline, ideology (to love Uganda) and to love themselves by not dying from AIDS and alcohol. He called upon them to seek for constant training to advance their knowledge within the Force. “Otherwise, the future is very bright for you. I congratulate you and I wish you good luck. It is now my pleasure to use the powers given to me under the Constitution to pass you out,” Gen Museveni added.

The Minister for Internal Affairs Maj. Gen. Kahinda Otafiire described the event as an accountability to the voters in enhancing their security and urged the new police officers to serve with dignity.

“Serve the country, don’t serve anybody else. Serve Uganda and make sure you make Uganda a better place to live. And I want you to pursue your careers with focus. All of you police officers should aim at getting the Inspectors General’s button. It’s a result of hard work, discipline and commitment to the population,” Gen Otafiire said.

He urged the Immigration Officers who have been undergoing induction to defend the country and promised to address their litany of needs.

“You are our first-line of defence who choose who comes into Uganda and decides who leaves Uganda,” Otafire added.

He decried what he termed as a pathetic housing situation for the three security agencies, attributing it to the bureaucratic methods of allocating resources by the Ministry of Finance, calling upon President Museveni to reign-in.

The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Martins Okoth Ochola thanked the President for the financial support and guidance that enabled them to transform, instruct and nurture the new officers despite the current economic challenges.

“This is in addition to the several strings of emergency training of personnel to beef up the quality and strength of the force so as to enhance its capacity to confront the contemporary security challenges facing the nation,” IGP Ochola said.

The IGP informed President Museveni that his force is in advanced stages of improving the welfare of its officers in line with his directive. He said construction of police headquarters in Naguru is ongoing and they will soon commission the construction of a modern 300 bed police hospital in Nsambya. They also hope to put up 53,000 accommodation units.

The Commandant of Kabalye Police Training School CP Abdallah Sowedi told the gathering that the new recruits have undergone rigorous training and have demonstrated their commitment to uphold the law and ensure the safety and security of the country and beyond.

“They have been equipped with vast knowledge and skills that will enable them to carry out their duties in line with the mandate of their respective departments with emphasis to the professional conduct and strict adherence to the code of public officers as they serve the community. They now know their core mandate of serving and always prioritizing the needs of the community,” CP Abdallah said.

Earlier President Museveni also commissioned the Central Lecture Hall at Kabalye Police Training School.

The ceremony was also attended by the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Internal Affairs Lt. Gen. Joseph Musanyufu, UPDF Joint Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Leopold Kyanda who represented the Chief of Defense Forces and the Director Citizenship and Immigration Control Maj. Gen. Apollo Kasiita.

Others were; commanders from the Uganda Peoples Défense Forces, Directors from Uganda Police Force, Uganda Prisons and the Directorate of Citizenship Immigration Control, Ministers, Members of Parliament, representatives from Bunyoro-Kitara Kingdom led by Omuhikirwa Andrew Byakutaaga, Masindi District Leaders and Religious Leaders notably Bishop George William Kasangaki of Masindi and Sheikh Yahaya Mugisha.