Why can’t UPDF be like Kenya’s forces


The information we are seeking should be public as is the case in Kenya. No secrets are being spilled if UPDF were to come forward and state that the chain of command in the military is so and so.

In Kenya the structure is very clear for all. The overall Army boss is the Chief of General Staff (CGS), deputized by the vice CGS and then Army Commander, then Deputy Army Commander/Airforce/Navy chiefs. UPDF should do away with the chief of staff and go the Kenyan way with CGS. Army chief of staff in Kenya-may be there but-is not listed among the senior ranks of the army. CGS is the overall CGS for all units, army, air force and navy. In Uganda we have individual chief of staff for army (Lt Gen. Koreta), air force and so on. Now can anyone tell me how an army chief of staff is senior to the Commander of the army? This contradicts the statements made by some people that General Koreta is senior to General Katumba the land army commander!

The media should tell Major Kulayigye to learn from Kenya where he just returned from some course. He should know by now that the man who was head of the staff college he attended in Karen, Lt Gen Tuwei (a Kalenjin) was recently named Army Commander to replace General Njoroge. He is now the 3rd ranking army officer. There is clarity in Kenya which is lacking in Uganda I guess for obvious reasons.

Do the media ever ask questions to govt spokespeople or they simply take their press releases and print it? Do the media or assigned reporters ever ask the police spokesperson questions on record? What about Major Kulayigye? Do defence or amy ever hold press conferences? And if they do, have the papers and FM stations assigned reporters to cover the army, police etc? Well we have been told that UPDF is open so why not ask them to send the media houses press releases if they are too busy to talk to the media about the chain of command in descending order?

Sometime back, there was talk of reforming UPDF. What I am saying is that the current structure may not be the best. I prefer the Kenya structure for its clarity and effectiveness. In Kenya at least, the Army Commander is 3rd in seniority. That much is clear. Kenya has tried to rotate the CGS among the three units Army (current), Navy (immediate former) and Airfoce (next if rotation stays).

Kenya also has a set ratio in terms of military promotions. The ratio that must be followed is 7:2: 1 in favour of Army, Airforce and Navy respectively. I suspect that is what makes the army commander a grade above the other service commander. Is there such a ratio in Uganda?

We are interested in debating the national defence policy. Certainly UPDF could do better. Again, I use the Kenyan example. CGS serves for one 4 year term and goes home. The President may extend that if need be, but it has served the military well. All senior commanders must also retire by the age of 58. That age limit means that the recently named army commander will have to retire in 2 years. The clarity makes it easier for others to emerge and lead.

Now compare that with Uganda where people come in and out. What is the status of Kazini for example? This business of Katebe should be ended.

I personally know a senior UPDF officer-will not say rank-who is well educated but he has stuck in the ranks for years. He wants to leave but they won’t let him go home. And yes, the chap is from South Western Uganda.

If you checked the Kenyan DOD, there are no army chiefs of staff anywhere so they must be lower the chain.

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