Former Inspector General of Police (IGP) Gen Kale Kayihura was a fortnight ago acquitted by the General Court Martial after 5 years.
Kayihura in 2018 was charged with a raft of charges, including arming a criminal gang, allowing refugees to be abducted by police and failing to protect war materials.
He was charged long with other soldiers and police officer who include Lt Col Peter Musherure,
ACP Herbert Muhangi (former Flying Squad Commander), SSP Richard Ndaboine, AIP Jonas Ayebaze, Sgt Abel Tumukunde and Col Atwooki Ndahura who headed Police Crime Intelligence.
They were all charged in the military court.
Whereas they were all released, they have not been acquitted like their former boss, so what is their fate?
Under Section 68 (4) of the UPDF Act it stipulates that to release and exceptions, “an officer or a militant shall not be entitled to be released at a time when, as a result of having committed or being suspected of having committed an offence under this Act, proceedings against him or her under this Act are or are likely to be taken.”
Accordingly, therefore, by the General and Administrative Order No. 9 the President of Uganda and the Commander in Chief approved the retirement of officers (who belonged to UPDF; Col Ndahura and Lt Col Musherure) as advised by the Commissions Board.
The commander in Chief is also the Chairman of the High Command which appoints the General Court Martial.
Although trial in the case of Gen. Kale and his subordinates had not commenced.
The function of the Commissions Board includes “to monitor the retirement of officers due for retirement and to determine any termination of service”.
Membership includes the Chief of Defence Forces as the Chairperson while principal members include the Chief of Military Intelligence who is the arresting and investigating authority and the Chief of Legal Services who is the Charging and prosecution authority.
They are also members of the High Command.
In the same respect, following the approval by Commander in Chief a nolle prosequi was entered by prosecution thus withdrawing the charges against Gen. Kale Kayihura before the General Court-martial a day before he was retired.
It brings to the end his five-year humiliating experience of sacking, arrest, incarceration, and limited freedom of movement.
Col. Ndahura Atwooki who was on the same approved list for retirement was neither discharged from service nor from prosecution.
It can also be noted that he was posted to the Uganda Police Force as Assistant Inspector General of Police in 2016.
He was therefore not in the Police Force when offences allegedly committed by subordinates in the same Force happened
Nevertheless, Col Kizza Besigye and his sister Olive Kobusingye await his retirement benefit for Shs 350M, bills of costs he was served while in incarceration after he lost a Court case against the duo.
He had sued them for defamation case in respect of “the correct Line, Uganda Under Museveni’ book which was subject of debate as contained in the Hansard of the Parliament of UK.
In the same book he is considered a blue-eyed boy who was rewarded by a promotion following his alleged atrocities in Rukungiri 2001.
To this end the fate of the police officers who were jointly charged with Gen. Kale Kayihura remains in balance as their connection to the military court was by association with their IGP who a member of the military Regular Forces at the same time.