Source: The New Vision Uganda
President Yoweri Museveni has said the success registered by the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) contingent that is serving in Somalia is due to Uganda’s ideology, discipline, training and political solidarity.
President Museveni, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, was yesterday passing out soldiers who had concluded a seven month peace support operations course at Singo Training Centre in Nakaseke district.
The soldiers are due to leave for peacekeeping duties in Somalia.
Museveni observed that the officers who are serving with the African Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) have recorded tremendous success due « to our ideology of Pan-Africanism ».
He said Somalia is part of the African continent, adding that when Ugandans were fighting the dictatorship in their country, they got support from Tanzania and Mozambique.
« It is on this note that we could not ignore our brothers, the Somalis, » the President said.
Museveni said the UPDF troops were sent to Somalia under the policy that Africa is one and that we are all Africans.
He added that the NRM Government rejects traits of sectarianism based on tribe or religion.
Museveni told the participants that during the liberation struggle, operational etiquette never tolerated members of the force who spoilt the dignity of women, never condoned killings or used bad language.
He reminded the soldiers that the UPDF contingent in AMISOM has had good training and maintained combat readiness.
The President, therefore, advised the soldiers to be systematic and fully alert in their operations, taking particular care of their own lives, especially in the event of encountering suicide bombers.
He commended the political solidarity in Africa that is geared towards addressing the Somalia issue.
Museveni also lauded the international support extended to AMISOM by the US, Great Britain and other countries signified by their provision oflogistics. He urged the soldiers to be vigilant and desist from engaging in extra-marital affairs while in Somalia.
The President commended the UPDF leadership for their role in training the soldiers.