Police operations director, Assistant Inspector General of Police-AIGP Edward Osiru Ochom, has officially retired from Uganda Police Force after serving for 35 years.
He joined the force on February 1, 1987 as one of the more than 100 strong group of Cadet Assistant Superintendent of Police, the first such intake under the National Resistance Army-NRA government that took power in January 1986.
While handing over power to his deputy Senior Commissioner of Police-SCP John Nuwagiira, according to sources who attended the closed-door event, Ochom reportedly said he was grateful for serving the force, attaining highest rank, leaving when he is still strong and with an untainted reputation.
Ochom was not keen on leaving the police but he was out of contract. Police standing procedures state that once a police officer attains the highest rank of AIGP and he is 45 years and above, he or she starts serving on contract basis.
If the person gets promoted to AIGP when still below 45 years like late AIGP Andrew Kaweesi or the current Interpol director AIGP Grace Akullo, he or she continues serving the force ordinarily until the stipulated contract age.
But in exceptional circumstances like that of AIGP Akullo and fallen AIGP Kaweesi, President Yoweri Museveni, who is the appointing authority awarded them indefinite contracts. That means they serve uninterrupted up to 60 years which is the stipulated retirement age for public servants.
Ochom joins his colleagues of the same rank who have retired in the last two months after Museveni choosing not to renew their contracts. Eight police directors, Ochom inclusive applied for renewal of their contracts late last year but the appointing authority found no reason for giving them new contracts.
Those who had applied for renewal of their contracts were AIGP Asan Kasingye, AIGP Andrew Sorowen, AIGP Joseph Mugisa, AIGP John Ndungutse, AIGP Abbas Byakagaba, AIGP Erasmus Twaruhukwa, AIGP Francis Rwego and AIGP Haruna Isabirye.
However, Museveni early this month renewed contracts of only two career police directors. AIGP Byakagaba, the Director Counter-Terrorism who returned to office last Friday since his contract had expired a month earlier and he had handed over office to his deputy SCP Wilson Omoding.
Another person who was awarded a new contract is AIGP Ndungutse who is police attaché to Nairobi.
Museveni also renewed contracts of three military brigadier generals in the police force even though they had not applied. These are Brig Gen Chris Damulira as director crime intelligence, Brig Gen Jesse Kamunanwire as director human resource management and Brig Gen Godfrey Golooba, the director human resource development.
Those who have since left the force after the non-renewal of their contracts include AIGP Kasingye who was director chief political commissar, and AIGP Soroweni who was director production, welfare and general duties that includes sport.
Ochom in his 35 years’ career served as director research and planning, director CID, administrator CID, KMP police commander, greater Kampala regional CID commander and Kawempe police station CID commander.