ACDF OPD&T Major General Adan Mulata receives a certificate from the UPDF (Uganda People’s Defence Force) Deputy Chief of the Defence Forces Lieutenant General Wilson Mbadi during the event at Boma Grounds in Butareja District on Tuesday 6th February 2018.
Ugandans and the East African Community (EAC) fraternity from all walks of life, came together to celebrate ‘TareheSita’ and 1st ever EAC Armed Forces Day at ButalejaBoma Grounds on 6 February 2018.
TareheSita, held annually on 6th February, has become a day in history when Uganda marks the birth of the National Resistance Army (NRA) that metamorphosed into Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF). On that day in 1981, 43 fighters with 27 rifles led by H.E. the President and Commander in Chief of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces, General YoweriMuseveni, attacked Kabamba Barracks.
This year’s TareheSita is marked jointly with the East African Community Armed Forces Day which is a collaboration of regional armed forces to serve civilians through civil military cooperation activities. EAC Armed Forces Day resonates with the decision of the EAC Defence Council of last year to link the military cooperation with civilians as the region integrates. The event also marked the climax of a week of civil military activities carried out by armed forces from Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania South Sudan and Uganda. The preceding activities among others included: Medical camps, Blood donation drive and light engineering works throughout the Bukedi region districts of Butaleja, Kibuku, Pallisa, Busia, Tororo and Budaka.
Kenya Defence Forces team comprising of 8 medics and 10 engineers participated in the civil military cooperation. The team was assigned Pallisa district which is in Eastern part of Uganda. The medical team led by Major RisperMurunga-Nursing officer in-charge Defence Headquarters Camp Administration Unit and Captain (Dr) LaurineKigamwa provided free Medicare to the residents of Kamuge and Apopong. The Engineering team led by Captain Gilbert Gitau renovated the Kamuge Health Centre III Out Patient Department (OPD) both team worked hand in hand with their UPDF counterparts. Speaking to KDF and UPDF team at Kamuge Health Centre III Lieutenant Colonel KyaloMusyoki who is the Staff Officer 1 in-charge of Civil Military Operations Defence Headquarters and the head of KDF contingent thanked the KDF and UPDF teams for the cooperation exhibited during the CIMIC activities he congratulated them for the job well done and urged them to keep the spirit of EAC integration going.
This year’s event is being held under the theme “Reaffirming the Contribution of the Armed Forces towards Regional Integration for our Strategic Security, Development and Prosperity”.
Speaking during the 37thTareheSita Anniversary at ButalejeBoma Grounds, Uganda People’s Defence Forces Chief of Defence Forces General David Muhoozi said the national Army has successfully exported peace from Uganda to the rest of the Great Lake Region. In his speech, CDF Gen Muhoozi said TareheSita is not a mere ceremony. “It’s about our heritage as a force. This day is celebrated on a rotational basis countrywide because UPDF belongs to the people of Uganda. It’s our desire to use this occasion to foster harmony and peace. One of our biggest export is peace within the region. Today’s event was preceded by armed forces week. We are delighted to be maiden host of this occasion the theme resonates well with the EAC corporation agenda”, Gen Muhoozi observed. He said the UPDF is one of the vehicles of integration. He added that Bukedi sub regions which is made up of Butaleja, Budaka, Busia, Pallisa Kibuku and Tororo has a place in the history of the liberation struggle. Speaking during the event Brigadier Henry Masiko who is the Chief Political Commissar (UPDF) and also the officer in charge of Defence organizing committee for Tarehe Sita-2018 said the TareheSita and EAC Armed Forces week activities were successful, adding that the community turned up especially for medical camp was overwhelming.
President YoweriMuseveni who is the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Uganda People’s Defence Forces was the chief guest at the event. Nearly four decades ago, he led a group of young fighters of the National Resistance Army (NRM) in an attack on Kabamba military Barracks in Mubende on February 6, 1981. President Museveni clarified that the struggle had long started before that eventful day. “TareheSita was not the first action”adding that it was one of the subsequent efforts in the liberation struggle.
The late Mozambic revolutionary and military commander Samora Marcel and fallen Tanzania President Julius Nyerere were the first to help Uganda in the 1970s. “Never forget the solidarity of Tanzania and Mozambique”, Museveni said. He also hailed regional and continental leaders for their interest in a United Africa. “Africa was colonized because it was not united. Therefore I salute the leaders of East Africa and leaders of Africa. They are now talking about unity of East Africa and Africa”. Museveni said, recalling how leaders had backed the creation of a continental free Trade Area during a recent conference in neighboring Rwanda.
Present during the event were: Hon Adolf Mwesige-Minister of Defence& Veteran Affairs, Hon Lt Col (Rtd) Dr Bright Rwamirama- Minister of State for Veteran Affars (Uganda), Hon Col (Rtd) Charles OkelloEngola- Minister of State For Defence (Uganda) , Mrs. Rosette Byengoma- Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs, Gen DavidMuhoozi-Chief of Defence Forces (Uganda), Lt Gen Wilson Mbadi-Deputy Chief of Defence Forces(Uganda), Maj Gen JB Musanyufu-Joint Chief of Staff (Uganda), Maj Gen AdanMulata-Assistant Chief of Defence Forces OPD&T (Kenya), Mr. Francis Mutie-Ministry of Defence, Secretary Administration (Kenya), Colonel S K ChirchirDefence Attaché (Kenya), Colonel Bernard OluochDefence Liaison Officer for Kenya at the EAC Secretariat among other senior military representatives from The EAC countries.
As the first ever EAC Armed Forces is marked all the East Africans are urged not to slacken but remain focused on the benefits that accrue from integration. The integration of east Africa is not just for prosperity but also for security and survival.
ACDF OPD&T Major General Adan Mulata shaking hands with the Ugandan President HE Gen (Rtd) Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
Ugandan President HE Gen (Rtd) Yoweri Kaguta Museveni salutes the UPDF Colour during the 37th UPDF Tarehe Sita Anniversary Celebrations at Boma Grounds in Butareja District.
A section of KDF troops salute the Presidential dias during March Past.
A section of Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) troops headed by the Parade Commander Colonel Freeman Robert Mugambe salute the Presidential dais during March past.
ACDF OPD&T Major General Adan Mulata (3rd from left) in a group photo with some senior KDF officials and some members from the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA).