As the country heads for the much anticipated 2021 general elections, the Chief of Defence Forces Gen. David Muhoozi has assured Ugandans that UPDF shall back up the police force in ensuring security and safety throughout the electoral process.
Gen. Muhoozi said that the Army is prepared and investing big so as to counter any possible threats and likely scenarios that may arise during this period.
He revealed this while discussing the role that security forces will be playing in the forthcoming elections.
“In the tool kit, we have all the options available such as human resource because this election, more than any other in the past, is being held in the context of Covid-19, we have new constituencies, more participants and that has a huge administrative bill which police alone cannot manage,” he said.
“So we need to support them but also to do so in a more organised way,” he added.
According to him, it is three months now since the Army decided to prepare for elections and they are catching up on various arrangements and he is confident that UPDF shall do its best in securing the elections such that the people of Uganda exercise their democratic mandate peacefully.
In other preparations, the commander said that the army is working to strengthen its media operations in order to counter and monitor misguiding online reports that malign its image.
Gen. Muhoozi cautioned political actors and voters against antagonism saying that well as it is their freedom to exercise their rights, it does not include the freedom to commit breaches of the law and whoever is found on the wrong side of the law, security agencies shall catch up with them.
On the other hand, however, Gen. Muhoozi revealed that soldiers who are on operations outside the country are not going to exercise their right of voting because of the logistics involved due to the prevailing Covid-19 situation.
“Unfortunately our soldiers in Somalia and other missions won’t be able to vote because of the logistics. We would have wanted them to but it is not possible especially now that we have just rotated them after some delay because of Covid-19,” he said.
He said that even now, they haven’t inserted the soldiers in their forward bases because they need to be quarantined so it will be easy to extract them to vote.