Veterans from the Kigezi Region have asked government to grant them slots in Parliament and local governments as one of the special interest groups.
WOII (Rtd) Caleb Turyamutunga, the Kigezi Region Veterans Chairperson says with this kind of representation, veterans will get a voice in policy formulation and decision making.
Turyamutunga says most veterans continue to suffer while trying to make ends meet, despite Government’s purported commitment to improving their livelihoods.
He added that some veterans who died have not had any support to their families and that there is an unfair distribution of the gratuity and pension offers for veterans.
Rtd. Captain Clever Bagole from Kisoro district said, the veterans challenges have remained unsolved because they do not have representatives in Parliament or local governments.
He says they also want to be represented like other specials interest groups like women, the disabled, workers, the Army, youth and the elderly so that their challenges can be worked on.
The veterans made the appeal while meeting the Minister of Defence and Veteran Affairs, Rtd. Lt. Col. Dr. Bright Rwamirama at Kabale District Rukiiko hall on Wednesday.
In response, the Minister Rwamirama promised to take the request to the Commander in Chief, President Yoweri Museveni for consideration.
Minister Rwamirama asked Veterans to be appreciative of the various initiatives the NRM government has put forward in championing their plight.
“Since independence there is no government that had thought about Veterans like the NRM government, which has come out to think about your welfare,” said Rwamirama.
Rwamirama asked Veterans to form cooperatives so as to get government support saying that Government is ready to support them if they are united as groups.
He added that they should include all veterans from Police and Prisons so that cooperatives become general.
His Ministry, he said, is currently mobilizing for Over 500 billion Shillings to support Veteran welfare saying that with the presence of an independent Ministry, the retiring officers will be receiving their gratuity and pensions in time before joining the existing veterans.