Mbarara. Officials from the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) have warned Crime Preventers from Western Uganda that they should know and understand their duties and responsibilities if they are to work together with Army and Police.
Addressing the security personells during the launch of mobilization and documentation exercise of Reserve Forces, Brig. Kasula Kyomukama the Director for National Institute Kyankwanzi warned some of the Crime preventers around the country who are trying to do activities or roles forces of which they are not trained for.
Kasula said that the role of Crime Preventer is to detect any kind of insecurity and report to the responsible authority either Police or Army for the action. He added that a crime preventer does not have means and thorough training to arrest a suspect. Therefore, they are supposed to report to the Security Agencies.
“Once you the crime preventers do the wrong things and take law in your hands, you will be panelized according to UPDF Act” said Brig. Kasula.
He said this in a security meeting between UPDF Officers, the Crime Prevention Coordinators, and the UPDF Veterans and other Stakeholders including RDCs from Western Uganda. The meeting was held at Lake View Hotel Mbarara on Friday this week.
Crime Preventers also lamented before the Chief Guest Lt. Gen Charles Otema the Commander of the Reserve Force that as security coordinators are mistreated by police. John Ndogo, the regional Coordinator Greater Mbarara, told Chief Guest that Police no longer trust Crime Preventers therefore, sometimes they have nowhere to report.
Ndogo further reported that some of the motorcycles which were given to the Crime prevention coordinators were taken by the police officers and now are being misused as Bodabodas and as crime prevention coordinators have no way to recover them. According to Ndogo, Mbarara has about 3473 crime preventers and Bushenyi also has about 2458.
Crime Preventers were previously under police until when the President ordered that they go under the control of Army.
Gen. Otema in his speech said that Reserve Force should be under one structure for easy control. That Crime Preventers will be trained and documented by the army to perform the right duties of Reserve Force.
Otema further informed the meeting that crime rate among Municipalities is high and steadily increasing something that puts pressure among the security agencies and political leaders therefore, the creation of Reserve Force is highly needed to fill some security gaps.