Crime Preventers a Value Addition to Police - Kayihura

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In short
Crime Preventers are a volunteer force of civilians recruited and managed by the Uganda Police to report on and prevent crime in cooperation with the police and communities. However, their legitimacy and role has in the recent past been questioned owing to their affiliation to the ruling National Resistance Movement-NRM.

The Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura has commended the contribution of Crime Preventers in combating crime at community level.

Crime Preventers are a volunteer force of civilians recruited and managed by the Uganda Police to report on and prevent crime in cooperation with the police and communities. However, their legitimacy and role has in the recent past been questioned owing to their affiliation to the ruling National Resistance Movement-NRM.

They were singled out among groups that perpetrated violence during the just concluded general election, according to a report released by both local and international human rights bodies, observing that the existence of the group threatens peace in the communities and at national level.

But General Kale Kayihura says he has collected commendable reports about Crime Preventers during recent country meetings.

"I have been holding conferences with police officers, and they are the ones who were formerly skeptical, but overwhelmingly they are appreciating the work of crime preventers. Definitely they are a value addition and it's an initiative we should not scorn," Kayihura said.

Kayihura says that whereas there are some flaws with the initiative, the role of Crime Preventers in pacifying the country cannot be underestimated adding that critics of the approach are anti-development.
 
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Dr Hellen Nkabala Nambalirwa from the department of Religion and Peace studies at Makerere University equally hails the work of Crime Preventers saying all citizens must play a role in fighting crime.

She however urged Crime Preventers to stick to their roles and responsibilities in order to avoid clashes with the communities.
 
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