Prior to the decision, Uganda Police Force provided meals for all officers and suspects at all police stations around Southern region. The meals include breakfast served with porridge and bread and a lunch package comprising of posho and beans. Suspects would also get dinner.
Some of these police officers go for operations on empty stomach as police scrap off lunch
Police officers at stations within greater Masaka Region are no longer entitled to free meals as the force moves to scrap the service.
Prior to the decision, Uganda Police Force provided meals for all officers and suspects at all its stations around Southern region. The meals included breakfast served with porridge and bread and a lunch package comprising of posho and beans. Suspects would also get dinner.
However, the provision is no more. Latif Zaake, the Southern Region Police Commander says that this was a special arrangement for which Uganda Police Force secured funding to feed its personnel and suspects during the 2016 electoral period.
He adds that the arrangement went on and covered the post-election period but was stopped because it is not sustainable within the limited resource envelope.
The decision has left officers disappointed. Some officers who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are banned from speaking to the media told Uganda Radio Network that they thought this lunch innovation would be sustained.
One female officer said she had stopped spending money on meals because she would get enough provision for her and her family members. She notes that although police gives them some maize floor, there are times when the police maize floor delays and she has to dig deep into her pocket to buy food.
Two restaurants have now opened up at Masaka Central Police Station where officers are buying their own meals.
Asan Kasingye, the Ugandan Police Spokesperson told URN in a phone interview that the force cannot provide lunch for its officers. He says they do not have any vote for officer's lunch at police stations. He says police only provided lunch during election period because it had budgeted for such resources.
Uganda Police budget increased from 527 billion Shillings in 2016/2017 to an estimated 530billion Shillings in the financial year 2017/2018. The budget has no provision for meals.