Home 2021 Elections Revealed: Why Museveni fired Sabiiti Muzeeyi as Deputy IGP

Revealed: Why Museveni fired Sabiiti Muzeeyi as Deputy IGP

How Bobi Wine protests cost deputy police chief IGP Sabiiti Muzeeyi his job

Bobi Wine, Sabiiti Muzeeyi and Museveni
Bobi Wine, Sabiiti Muzeeyi and Museveni. Courtesy Photos

When President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni appointed Maj Gen Steven Sabiiti Muzeeyi as deputy police chief, many believed he was just preparing him to replace IGP Martins Okoth Ochola in the coming months.

Museveni had fired his long-serving police chief Gen Kale Kayihura.

And he needed another military officer to take over police’s administration – which he said had been infiltrated with weevils.

Yet, just over two years, Museveni has fired Muzeeyi and replaced him with Maj Gen Paul Lokech – and reappointed Ochola as IGP.

Muzeeyi might have had issues with Museveni but recent protests that followed the arrest of National Unity Platform (NUP) in Luuka District were the straw that broke the camel’s back.

In the protests, at least 54 people were killed.

In his November 29 address on the matter, Museveni complained of the “weakness of the police that allows impunity of lawlessness to persist.”

Two months earlier, Museveni had complained of the weakness in the police administration.

“I told the IGP that if the police doesn’t do their work, I will do it myself by arresting the police officers themselves,” Museveni said during an event at the NRM secretariat at Plot 10 Kyadondo Road in Kampala as he handed over motorcycles to NRM sub-county chairpersons.

Then it looked like Museveni had a bone of contention with Ochola – not Muzeeyi.

Ochola looked like he was already on Museveni’s chopping board – and that Muzeeyi would rise as Ochola fell.


In his communication of the new changes, Museveni alluded to why he relieved Muzeeyi of his duties.

He congratulated the UPDF for “defeating the insurrection that the traitors, with their foreign backers, attempted to stage a few weeks back.”

He then added that “the police force must be made to do its duty of defending Ugandans from lawlessness, threat to life and property.”

The president warned that “any police person that doesn’t do this must leave the police” because “there are thousands ready to replace them.”

Museveni had expected Ochola and Muzeeyi to act on intelligence reports and nip the plans for Bobi Wine protests in the bud.

Desperate for a replacement that would ably fit in Kayihura’s shoes – his ability to penetrate into opposition camps and convince riot organizers or at least their followers to abandon their plans – the president had hoped Muzeeyi would help break the opposition’s back.

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