Uganda Police Force has launched a state-of-the-art laboratory to strengthen its investigation unit.
“The facility (the laboratory) will not only support a speedy investigation but also improve the conviction rates (in Courts of law) hence the need to invest more resources in it,” Principal Judge Dr. Flavian Zeija said at the commissioning of the lab at Police headquarters, Naguru, Kampala.
“Crime is becoming sophisticated and technology advancement keeps changing with time hence more training and investment in such machinery is needed.”
The judge said the force’s leadership should invest more in training more officers, especially in forensic science in order to have more manpower to run the facility.
Maj. Gen. Paul Lokech, the deputy Inspector General of Police (IGP), represented his boss, Okoth Ochola, and said that the police management is committed to building a modern and professional force.
“Our major focus as Police Management is to rebuild and transform the Uganda Police Force into a modern, professional, service-oriented, pro-people and effective institution,” he said.
According to Gen. Lokech, the application of robust scientific methods such as the new lab will enhance the capacity to investigate crimes such as transnational crimes, cyber-crimes, trafficking in drugs and persons, human sacrifice, trading in wildlife and their products among others.
“The use of science in modern policing is key to investigations globally and we are now proud to have a directorate of Forensic Services that spearheads the application of science in our approach.”
Speaking at the event, the acting director of Forensic Services SP Andrew Mubiru, said that the directorate handles ballistic and tools marks, crime identification, chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosives analysis, and cybercrime among others.
Mubiru revealed that the Directorate has been hosting the East African Regional Forensic Referral Center of Excellence (RFRC) on behalf of the government of Uganda since 2012.