The Uganda Police Force has tabled its 2017/18 Financial Year budget in which it intends to spend Shs505 billion.
According to the Budget Framework Paper presented to Parliament yesterday by police undersecretary Rogers Muhiirwa, Shs44 billion has been earmarked to procure teargas to control crowds.
Shs58.4 billion is allocated for the fire department; Shs70.1 billion is allocated for transport, Shs33.3 billion on crime prevention, Shs12.8bn on counter terrorism and ShsSh6.7bn for Interpol, Mr Muhiirwa revealed to Parliament’s Defense Committee last evening.
In his presentation, Mr Muhiirwa also stated that police will spend Shs166 .75billin on welfare among other expenditures.
Reacting to Mr Muhiirwa’s presentation, Mr Gilbert Oulanyah wondered why the Force was planning to spend Shs44 billion to stop demonstrators yet police officers continue to live in abject poverty.
“Whenever we budget for controlling riots, the first thing they do is buy teargas. I really think police officers should get a better way of controlling riots,”Mr Oulanyah said.
He was supported by his counterpart Mr Muwanga Kivumbi, (Butambala) who termed the proposed expenditure of crowd control worrying.
Earlier , the MPs put state minister for Internal Affairs Obiga Kania on spot to explain why the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Gen Kale Kayihura had not turned up to defend the budget. MPs have long waited to meet Gen Kayihura but in vain.
In his defence, Mr Obiga informed the legislators that he could not be held liable for Gen Kayihura’s absence insisting that the Force is not built around one person.
“All I know is today [yesterday]; I have adequate representation and I think we can proceed,” Mr Obiga said.