By Insight Post Uganda
President Yoweri Museveni, the Commander-In-Chief Of Uganda’s Armed Forces (UPDF), has recently urged the country’s military personnel to prioritise the ideology of patriotism while carrying out their duties.
Museveni was passing out 391 trainees on Friday, who have successfully completed their training in platoon commander and armoured basic crew courses at the Armoured Warfare Training School, Karama in Mubende district.
He emphasised that while the army may offer employment opportunities, its fundamental purpose lies in dedicated service to the nation. The soldiers ought to be reminded their commitment to patriotism and selfless work, even without compensation, played a pivotal role in forging a formidable and resilient armed force.
During his address, Mr. Museveni imparted invaluable insights from his own experiences and those of the earlier generations who served the country with unwavering dedication, even in times of limited resources.
The guerilla warfighter recounted moments when he and others were driven solely by the spirit of patriotism, offering their services without receiving any monetary compensation.
Their devotion to the nation’s welfare was the driving force behind the establishment of a strong and capable army, which continues to safeguard Uganda’s sovereignty.
According to the president, military personnel today have the advantage of receiving payment for their service. However, he urged them not to lose sight of the significance of patriotism, as it remains the core foundation upon which a truly formidable and principled armed force is built.
On the new team, 55 individuals successfully finished a one-year armoured platoon commander course, with five of them being females. Additionally, 336 participants, including 27 females, completed a six-month armour basic crew course.
According to the General, the graduates must maintain a commitment to learning about warfare, emphasising that building a strong force requires continuous education and knowledge enhancement.
In some regions in Africa, he noted, soldiers seem inadequately trained and highlighted the importance of effective planning for the security and defence of their countries.
Reflecting on the success of building the NRA/UPDF, Museveni attributed it to their dedication to study, discipline and constant learning, allowing them to transform the force from its inception into a formidable entity.
Defense Minister Vincent Ssempijja encouraged the graduates to utilise their acquired knowledge for the sake of long-term stability and security.
Ssempijja further highlighted that the significance of completing the course extended beyond individual achievements, as it also reflected their dedication to their homeland, Uganda.
The minister noted that the enhancement of the nation’s security relied on well-trained and educated military personnel who could effectively address the evolving security challenges.
Gen. Wilson Mbasu Mbadi, the Chief of Defense Forces, said armoured units are crucial in supporting field commanders because they offer high mobility, powerful firepower, protection, and shock action capabilities. This enables them to quickly achieve their main goal, which is defeating the enemy.
Karama Armoured Warfare Training School is currently the only place where young soldiers can learn effective tactics and the proper use of armoured vehicles. Mbadi further stressed that the success of the machine depends on the skills of its operator.
Sticking to the core values of the UPDF, such as discipline, teamwork, integrity, and love for knowledge is crucial, according to the CDF.
However, he emphasised the importance of maintaining a positive relationship between the army and the public, following the UPDF code of conduct.
During his address to the gathering, Mbadi revealed that a total of UGX 6.8 billion has been allocated for training institutions, which includes the construction of a tank gunship at the Karama training school.
The Karama Armoured Warfare Training School stands as the foremost institution within the UPDF, dedicated to the training and advancement of armour commanders, armour crews, armour instructors, armour technicians, and armour maintenance personnel.
In addition to its primary role, the school also conducts refresher and pre-deployment mission training for armour sub-units and components integrated into battle groups.
The primary objective of this training is to bolster their lethality and operational capabilities, thereby empowering them to carry out combined arms land operations with utmost effectiveness.
However, according to Brig Gen Peter Chandia, the commandant of Karama Armoured Warfare Training School, the course successfully achieved its objectives of enhancing the skills and expertise of individual crew members in gunnery and driving, developing coordination skills among single weapon crews necessary for effective operations, producing well-prepared armour platoon commanders who possess strong leadership abilities and can effectively lead their platoons.