March 2, 2024

Gen Lokech’s clan asks Ugandans to forgive him for ‘mistakes

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RIP: Gen Lokech
RIP Gen. Lokech

The members of Pa’Lubele clan in Paipir village, Pader district where the late deputy Inspector General of Police Maj Gen. Paul Lokech hails from have asked Ugandans to forgive their son for any wrongs, he could have committed during his tour of duty. 

Lokech died on Saturday morning from his home in Kitikifumba in Kira Municipality in Wakiso district. Postmortem findings issued by the police show that Lokech succumbed to a blood clot in his lungs. 

Mark Odongkara Odepa, the spokesperson of Pa’Lubele clan and a nephew to the deceased says that whereas the family believes Lokech was a good man, it’s also hard to deny that he could have made mistakes in his career. 

Odepa said that despite his mistakes, which were human, all those affected should find space in their hearts to forgive him and his clan members.  

“Our only message out there is that if anything happened, if there is any way my father stepped on your toe or as family we are on your toes, we ask for forgiveness. Of course, I know my father has not stepped on anyone’s toe, he was a person who loves peace, he doesn’t want to see anyone punishing another and that is what he was doing for the country,” Odepa said. 

Lokech’s untimely death has drawn both mockery and commiserations in equal measure with his critics citing warnings he issued to Ugandans who wanted to protest against the controversial January general polls.

Lokech then warned protestors to write their wills and buy coffins before going on the streets to demonstrate. Before the polls, President Museveni warned Ugandans he said intended to disrupt the elections that he’d deployed Lokech as who was astute in urban warfare and was ready to deal with disruptive opposition supporters. Lokech has also been targeted for gloating over the police killing of four suspects accused of the failed assassination of Gen Katumba Wamala on June 1. The suspects were already under arrest, but Lokech said they tried to escape. 

Now, Odepa notes that Lokech’s death should unite Ugandans who had differences to continue promoting his vision of ensuring peaceful co-existence. According to Odepa, the clan members haven’t yet received official communication from the government on the postmortem of their son, adding that they expect to get a full briefing from the state.

Lokech had just served for eight months as the deputy police chief following his appointment in December last year by President Museveni. Back in his home district of Pader, Lokech had a bumpy relationship with former Aruu County MP Samuel Odonga Otto who accused him of meddling in the January 2021 parliamentary elections in the district.  

Otto blamed his loss on Lokech, who he claimed meddled in the polls in favour of his opponent Christopher Komakech, an independent candidate and Lokech’s adopted son. Komakech garnered 9,327 votes against 5,953 votes garnered by Otto.  

The former legislator says that he has since forgiven Gen Lokech after sharing extracts from his future book “Otto my life story” on social media Sunday detailing his “horrific” campaign times and arrest allegedly masterminded by Lokech.

Meanwhile, mourners continue flocking the deceased home as preparations are in high gear for his send-off on Friday in Paipir village. Prior to his appointment into the Uganda Police force, Lokech served as the commander of Uganda People’s Défense Air force (UPDAF) between July to December 2019.

He also served on two occasions in war-torn Somalia as the Uganda People’s Defence Forces contingent commander between 2011-12 and 2017-2018 where he registered success in destabilizing Al-Shabaab and earned the name, “Lion of Mogadishu”

source: The Observer

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