Despite the ongoing tensions between Uganda and Rwanda that saw the closure of the latter’s border and stopping their citizens from going to the other’s country, Rwandan military officials have arrived in Kampala, the Nile Post has learnt.
The group of six military officers from Kigali arrived in Kampala on Tuesday as part of the contingent from six East Africa partner states for six day preparatory meeting for a Command Post Exercise (CPX) set for November.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Maj.Gen.Jean Jacques Mupenzi who led the delegation from Rwanda and is chairing the meeting said it is aimed at enhancing interoperability and building capacity of the East Africa forces and partner agencies in handling the region’s security challenges as a single block.
“This exercise will widen and deepen our integration we look forward to building a single force capable of planning and executing our mission together for the betterment of our region” Gen Mupenzi said.
He added that the East African region is facing security challenges and natural calamities that can be better addressed through concerted efforts by the region’s forces and other supporting agencies such as non-governmental organisations, hence the need to unite.
The joint meeting will review the exercise plan that was drawn in a concept development conference held in Arusha – Tanzania.
This year’s EAC Armed Forces CPX will be the 12th edition and is code named USHIRIKIANO IMARA 2019, and will focus on security challenges, peace support operations, disaster management, counter terrorism, and enhancing the state of readiness of EAC partner states in combating complex security challenges in the region among others.
The visiting delegations thanked the Ugandan government and the UPDF for the warm welcome and hospitality extended to them.
The command post exercise involves military and civil components, and is one of the joint activities by EAC Armed Forces aimed at enhancing the region cooperation in defence that are held on rotational basis among the member states, other activities include Field Training Exercises (FTX) and games.
All East African countries are represented with Burundi led by Col Gerald Nikunzi, Kenya by Col. JB Ngera, Rwanda by Maj.Gen. Jean Jacques Mupenzi, Tanzania by Brig. Marianus Mhangama, South Sudan by Brig. Nhiel Arou and Uganda by Maj. Gen. Sam Okiding.
The representatives from the armies, police and prisons across the six East African states will meet for six days at Silver Springs hotel as they prepare for the November Command Post Exercise.