President Museveni has said he is not only lucky but also blessed to have contributed to the wellbeing of the country.
“I am so lucky and blessed to have brought this country to where it is right now,” Museveni said on Wednesday evening during the ceremony to retire eleven UPDF generals from active service of the army at a function held at State House in Entebbe.
Eleven generals including Maj.Gen. Joshua Masaba, Maj.Gen. Ali Kiiza, Maj.Gen Kasirye Gwanga and Maj.Gen.Hussein Adda were retired officially from the army.
Others were Maj.Gen James Ssebaggala, Maj.Gen John Mateeka, Brig.Jacob Musajjawaza, Brig.Yowasi Kiiza, Brig.Stephen Othieno, Brig.Olanya Ojata and Brig.Mark Ayiasi Kodili.
The retired officers had served for a period of between 35 and 55 years.
Museveni said that for the first time in the history of country, Uganda is totally peaceful in all corners, a thing he partly attributed to the retired generals.
The commander in chief of the armed forces applauded each of the retiring soldiers for their contribution to the peace and stability of the country having joined the liberation struggle at different intervals.
“I am happy to be here to send off our old generals in dignity. You are blessed to have served and contributed to the peace of this country,” he said.
He however asked the army leadership to ensure that the retired generals live a decent life.
According to Museveni, there is a lot that needs to be done for the serving soldiers to be prepared well so they don’t suffer with social problems during their retirement.
He cited an example of schools and health facilities for the children of soldiers to study for free so the burden of looking for fees for them is lifted.
“You should start army schools that teach children of soldiers free but can also attract civilians to come to them and these can pay, ”Museveni told the army leadership.
“There is no need for soldiers to suffer with problems of social pressures .Those that are struggling should be helped individually so that they retire with dignity and comfort.”
Speaking at the function, the Chief of Defence Forces Gen.David Muhoozi described the function as being a milestone in the professionalization of the Ugandan army.
“Today is simple but significant in the life of the UPDF because we are sending off a large number of generals each with their own personal story,” Gen. Muhoozi said.
This was the first retirement function for such a big number of UPDF generals who have clocked the mandatory retirement age.