By Simon Abaho
The Commissioner General of Prisons, Dr.Johnson Byabashaija has made several changes in the Uganda Prison Service (UPS) in which 43 officers at various ranks have been moved.
The changes announced on Saturday saw John Bosco Tumwebaze who has been in charge of health services at the Prisons headquarters has been appointed as the acting director for administration to take over from Moses Bwijuka Katungye who has retired from active service whereas Raphael Olinga who has been on leave is now in charge of health services.
In other charges, Assistant Commissioner of Prisons, Moses Ssentalo who has been in charge of the Upper Prison has now been appointed as the acting Commissioner of Prisoners in charge of Inspectorate and Quality Assurance at the Uganda Prisons headquarters whereas Senior Superintendent of Prisons Ronald Kalali who has been in charge of the Uganda Prison farm in Adjumani is now appointed the Regional Prisons Commander mid-eastern to take over from Assistant Commissioner of Prisons James Aissu who has gone for his accumulated leave.
The changes have also seen Superintendent of Prisons Bryan Corr Mbaziira who has been of the Bushenyi Prison has been moved to take charge of the Upper Prison and is replaced by Superintendent of Prisons, Henry Kidega who has been in charge of the Ssaza prison among other officers transferred
The changes according to the Commissioner General of Prisons, take immediate effect.
“All officers from courses as well as caretakers who are not mentioned in these orders proceed in their various stations in respective capacities. All leave must be strictly taken outside the institutions. The director of administration should facilitate these movements,” Dr.Byabashaija said in the message.
President Museveni last year said with the leadership of Dr.Johnson Byabashaija, the future of the Uganda Prisons Services has a bright future.
“I want to thank prisons because I don’t hear much trouble there. It seems the discipline is quite high and I congratulate you on that.I congratulate you and life for you is just beginning (to get better). Good things are there in front. Uganda is peaceful and progressing well,”Museveni said during the passing out of 364 prisons officers including cadet Assistant Superintendents and Non-commissioned officers at a function held at Kololo independence grounds.
Speaking to Journalists in 2020, Dr.Johnson Byabashaija said he wishes to leave behind a more changed Uganda Prisons Services than the one he found.
He explained that he wants to prepare the next generation to smoothly take over and run matters in the Uganda prisons just like it has been done in the last 14 or so years under his helm.
“I would not wish to see the Uganda Prisons take that direction (being run by the army). I have commissioners, directors who can ably take over from me. Let me emphasize it so that they can take over from me properly.”
As the UPDF and Uganda Police Force started on a professionalization journey, Dr. Byabashaija says the Uganda Prisons Services took the same route and he says he wants to see it accomplished.
He explained that prisons officers no longer train in school to go for work and get promotions without additional courses as it was in the past.
“For junior officers, there is a Junior Non-Commissioned Officers’ course, Senior Non-Commissioned Officers’ course and Junior Command Course; for the seniors, we are doing the senior leadership course in Kyankwanzi, the intermediate course( together with police in Bwebajja) and the senior command course(Bwebajja),”Byabashaija said.
“I want the core members like Senior Superintendents of the Prisons, Superintendents and Assistant Senior Superintendents to get access to those courses.”