By Halima Athumani
KAMPALA, Uganda (AA) – Just ahead of a visit by Turkey’s president, Turkish police are conducting the latest in a series of professional development training courses for the Ugandan police.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, John Kamya, the Ugandan national police’s commissioner for human resource development and training, said, “Our Field Force personnel officers are being trained in building their capacity in different areas on the principles of riot control.”
The Turkish Special Forces trainers are conducting two courses over a period of two weeks: the basics of anti-riot control, and techniques for using anti-riot equipment. “The first team of 40 officers will have their course end on Friday and another team of 40 will start on Monday [and go] till the end of next week.”
In 2014, Turkey signed a memorandum of understanding to provide advanced training to the Ugandan police.
Kamya added, “We are have a good working relation with the Turkish government and they have been helping us in different respects. This is not the beginning and not the end.”
Turkish Ambassador to Uganda Sedef Yavuzalp confirmed the ongoing training and told Anadolu Agency, “There are 10 police officers here from Turkey for the training of 80 trainees … on riot control.”
Ugandan police spokesperson Fred Enanga told Anadolu Agency, “This is part of the advanced training which the Ugandan police force is focusing on.”
Enanga added that the training is being done in line with evolving trends in crime. “So we need to ensure we have regular training courses on trending crimes,” he said. “There are new techniques that are being used by criminals.”
Since the Turkey-Uganda agreement was signed, the Ugandan police have gotten special training in special operations, maintaining public order, and traffic control.
The training comes just ahead of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Uganda from May 31 to June 1, the first stop on his two-nation visit to East Africa.
After Uganda, Erdogan will proceed to Kenya.
During recent visits to Africa, Erdogan vowed to boost Turkish-African relations.
When Erdogan was prime minister, Ankara declared 2005 the Year of Africa, Turkey was accorded observer status by the Africa Union, and Turkey’s official policy of “opening to Africa” gained new momentum.