President Yoweri Museveni has made major changes in the military, appointing the Commander of Land Forces, Lt. General Edward Katumba Wamala as Chief of Defence Forces (CDF). Wamala, who has also been promoted to General, replaces General Aronda Nyakairima who now becomes Minister of Internal Affairs. Newly promoted Lt General Charles Angina is deputy CDF, replacing Lt General Ivan Koreta, who has been appointed Ambassador of station to be announced.
Wamala, who has also been promoted to General, replaces General Aronda Nyakairima who now becomes Minister of Internal Affairs.
To complete the shake up at the top of the Uganda Peoples Defense Forces (UPDF) leadership, Museveni promoted Major General Charles Angina to Lt General and appointed him deputy CDF. He replaces Lt General Ivan Koreta, who has been appointed Ambassador of station to be announced.
Until his new appointment, Angina has been Chief of Staff of Land Forces, a position that is now taken over by Brig Leopold Kyanda. Kyanda, has been Chief of Personnel and Administration. Formerly, he served also as Director of Military Intelligence.
The changes announced on Thursday also saw the president re-align his cabinet so as to accommodate Aronda who has been heading the UPDF for 10 years, having been appointed in June 2003.
Brig David Muhoozi, formerly Commander Air Defence Division, has been promoted to Major General and appointed Commander Land Forces. He replaces General Wamala, the new CDF
In other changes, Major General Fred Mugisha formerly the Joint Chief of Staff has been appointed Head of the National Counter Terrorism Centre to be set up.
Brig Wilson Mbadi, a long serving ADC to President Museveni, who was late last year appointed 4th Division Commander, is a Major General and Joint Chief of Staff.
Brig Samuel Turyagyenda, the Commander Airforce, is promoted to Maj Geneneral, while Col Emmanuel Kanyesigye, formerly 5th Division Operations Officer, has been appointed 4th Division Commander. He replaces Major General Mbadi, the new Joint Chief of Staff.
In a press release, Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, the army spokesperson congratulated the new officers on what he called deserved promotions and appointments.
To accommodate General Aronda in cabinet, Museveni moved Hilary Onek from Internal Affairs to Disaster Preparedness ministry, replacing Dr Stephen Mallinga who died in April this year.
The changes also saw Mary Karooro Okurut move from Information and National Guidance to Gender, Labour and Social Affairs, while John Narsasira, who has been Gender Minister, now goes to Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Dr Ruhakana Rugunda takes charge of Health, a ministry he once headed in the early 1990s. Dr Christine Ondoa becomes presidential advisor on Health.
Nakaseke Woman MP Rose Namayanja takes over Information and National Guidance as full minister.
The shake up comes as government struggles to rebuild the image of the army after one of the top officers, General David Sejusa, wrote a dossier suggesting that the UPDF was not cohesive. Sejusa, the Coordinator of Intelligence Services, claimed in his letter to the Director General of Internal Security Organisation (ISO) that there was a plan to eliminate army officers opposed to President Museveni’s plans to propel his son to the presidency. Brigadier Muhoozi Kainerugaba, Museveni’s son, is currently the Commander of the Special Forces.
Sejusa is currently out of the country, but his letter appears to have scratched the government the wrong way. Early this week, police raided and closed at least four media houses as they searched for a copy of the letter written by the General. The Monitor Publications which houses the Daily Monitor, KFM and Dembe FM are still closed. Also closed is the Pepper Publications, the publishers of the Red Pepper among other tabloids.