A DESERTION HAS CONSEQUENCES:
This is to address the lead story of Red Pepper today under the headline “Forgotten Soldiers Agony” on page 1.
The UPDF never abandons its own combatants, more so when maimed or sick.
The story of Private Mbaga shows a case of clear indiscipline, of a soldier that refused to report to the Rehabilitation centre as posted.
Once you do not report to your unit, you are counted absent for 21 days and eventually declared AWOL (Away without official leave). Once the unit declares you AWOL, the pay system strikes you off the payable strength, which is what happened with Private Mbaga.
The UPDF honors its casualties and that’s why they are accommodated in Mubende Rehabilitation centre, where Pte Mbaga would have been looked after.
At the centre, not only are our casualties kept on the payable strength, we make artificial limbs that our comrades benefit from at no cost. In addition, there are other welfare programs that our comrades enjoy at the centre.
Pte Mbaga therefore, is a deserter, no wonder he goes to the media instead of coming to the concerned offices in Bombo (LF HQs) or Mbuya (MODVA Hqtrs) to air out his grievances.
The military must be run on discipline or else it cannot secure the country effectively. This should be the interest of every citizen the Red Pepper inclusive.
For God and My Country