KAMPALA – Parliament of Uganda has directed the Ministry of Public Service to reinstate 171 Legal Police Officers on payroll after enduring three months without pay.
The Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa issued the directive during plenary sitting on Thursday.
The affected officers were recruited in 2010 on contracts and were earning salaries equivalent to those of the Directorate of Public Prosecution – DPP officers, but their names were deleted from payroll in October, 2022.
Records of the Public Service salary structure for the FY 2022/2023 for the Office of the DPP, show that the Director of Public Prosecutions and the Deputy earn Ugx22.5m and Ugx20m (U1S), respectively, while the lowest officer earns, State Prosecutor Ugx3m, every month.
Tayebwa noted that it had come to the attention of Parliament that the Government had been paying monthly salaries to the officers since 2010, but suddenly, the Ministry of Public Service Police management in October 2022, indicating that the officers had been overpaid over time –scrapping them off the payroll.
Grace Mary Mugasa –the State Minister for Public Service in her response to the directive, requested for time to table a report next week, detailing why her office took had taken the decision to scrap the affected Police officers from the payroll.
But her plea fell on deaf ears as Tayebwa insisted that the Ministry of Public Service committed an illegality that prompted the aggrieved Police officers to seek redress in court. Tayebwa added that the Ministry never acted on the matter despite a directive from President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
Further, Tayebwa pointed out that in order to address the wage concern of the Police officers, Parliament had passed a supplementary of Ugx17b to cater for their wages – scrapping them off the payroll was unjustifiable.
The Deputy Speaker also produced a copy of a letter addressed to Parliament by the Inspector General of Police Martin Okoth Ochola protesting the move by the Ministry of Public Service to delete the affected Police officers from the payroll.
Premier – Robinah Nabbanja requested Tayebwa to forward to her office the different correspondences relating to the grievances of the officers and promised to expeditiously handle the matter to its logical conclusion.
Additional reporting by URN