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Bisiika knows Kayihura’s problems began when he had outlived his usefulness; Kandiho and Kaka will soon meet a similar fate

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President Museveni and Gen Kale Kayihura.

By Moses Ssejoba

Last week, on 5 October 2019, The Daily Monitor’s Asuman Bisiika penned an article titled “Do I feel sorry for Kayihura over US sanctions? No I don’t,” in which he argues that, while in that office, the former Uganda Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kale Kayihura had exceeded his delegated authority and that for that reason he alone must be held accountable for the actions he took while in that position.

In addition to falsely posing as a Rwandan, Bisiika’s analysis falls woefully short. When he was IGP, Kayihura created many enemies on behalf of Museveni; Bisiika is probably one of those. But if Bisiika has beef with Kayihura, then, like his analysis, he is directing his anger at the wrong target.

It’s incomprehensible that Bisiika seems to fail to understand a simple fact: If Kayihura exceeded his delegated authority and “got away with it” for that long time, it’s solely because whatever he was doing was for the benefit of Museveni.

Related: Dear Secretary Pompeo, Kayihura violated human rights under Museveni’s direct instructions

As a result of that zeal on his master’s behalf while still IGP, Museveni has himself lauded Kayihura for being ‘a loyal cadre who goes beyond the call of duty in executing his tasks.’ For that very reason, he awarded Kayihura a medal and urged others to emulate him.

It is obvious, therefore, Kayihura always acted on the basis of “orders from above.”

When Bisiika argues that “orders from above are as good as the law,” he shows he understands very little how those very orders are implemented on the ground.

Bisiika argues convulutedly, that Kayihura took personal responsibility for the crimes he committed against Ugandans and that, in doing so, he exonerates Museveni from the crimes that Kayihura committed in his master’s name.

Related: The US sanctions Kayihura; it should sanction those “higher up”.

Over the past three years or so, CMI’s Abel Kandiho and ISO’s Kaka Bagyenda have been committing human rights abuses against Ugandans. They have not publicly taken responsibility for these crimes. Does this negate the fact that, like Kayihura, they too should be held accountable for carrying out Museveni’s unlawful orders since they – unlike Kayihura – have desisted from explicitly assuming responsibility for those crimes?

Moreover, does whether they publicly take responsibility for the crimes or not reduce the suffering they have inflicted on Ugandans on Museveni’s behalf, prompting the Americans to sanction Kayihura, possibly these other officers and probably soon Museveni himself?

Read: For those that do Museveni’s dirty work, what goes around comes around

The fact is that once it is “delegated power” then, under the principle of command responsibility, the person doing the delegating is ultimately answerable when there has been excesses in it’s use. Moreover, if Kayihura “overplayed his hand with delegated power” then why did Museveni take too long to remove him, including during those times that he (Kayihura) was taking responsibility for things he had no business owning up to?

For the same reasons Museveni isn’t removing the CMI and ISO chiefs who are clearly violating Ugandans’ human rights. Were we to follow Bisiika’s reasoning, these are also “overplaying” their hands with delegated authority.

Bisiika should grasp that Kayihura’s problems began the moment he had outlived his usefulness, as Kandiho and Kaka will also soon discover. When that time comes, the Americans will be ready to slap them too with sanctions. Then with his cutouts removed, it will be Museveni’s turn as well.