The UPDF is set to review the deployments of the Local Defence Unit personnel after a rise in the cases of indiscipline, the army spokesperson, Brig. Richard Karemire has said.
“There is no need to lose heart over these incidents. A comprehensive review of these deployments to enforce anti-COVID 19 measures is soon to take place and we expect better results,” Karemire said on Wednesday.
Without revealing further what will be entailed in the review, the army spokesperson said this is part of their efforts to ensure they correct mistakes that could have been made by the LDU personnel.
He also revealed that as part of these efforts, they will soon start issuing name tags for every member of the Local Defence Unit for easy identification in case of any case of indiscipline.
The development comes on the heels on an unprecedented incident in which LDU personnel assaulted the Mityana LC5 chairman, Joseph Luzige on Tuesday.
Luzige told journalists that the soldiers pushed and shoved him after he asked them to stop beating a woman who was bleeding while enforcing the presidential directives on Coronavirus.
When I asked them to arrest, instead of beating people, one of the officers who was drunk started pushing me. When I asked them to stop beating people, they told me that since I didn’t deploy them, I had no authority to stop them from what they were doing,” he said.
On Wednesday, the army spokesperson said four soldiers including the squad commander L/Cpl Simon Peter Anguria and his juniors; Pte Simon Odeke, Pte Caroline Musundi, and Pte Isaac Okello had been arrested following the incident.
He also noted that the Chief of Defence Forces, Gen.David Muhoozi dispatched a team of senior officers including Maj Gen Sam Kavuma, the Deputy Commander Land Forces; Maj Gen Sam Kawaga, the first Division Commander and Maj Gen Henry Masiko the Chief of Political Commissar to Mityana District, to make an on-spot assessment and confer with both the district leaders and the district security committee.
However, in a statement after the meeting, the Mityana District LC5 chairman said it had been agreed that LDU personnel only come out after being asked to provide assistance to police.
“The army has also assured the people of Mityana that no more assault or beating shall take place and they have directed UPDF soldiers in Mityana to go back to their base and will only come out after a request from police,” Luzige said.
In the past, on several occasions, LDU personnel have accused of brutalizing members of the public during their operations.
On Monday, the division court-martial in Oyam district sentenced a Local Defence Unit personnel to life imprisonment for beating a 65-year-old man to death while implementing the presidential directives on Coronavirus.