Twenty years ago, Colonel Edith Nakalema was a lowly lieutenant heading the Accounts section of the then Presidential Protection Unit (PPU).
Then, PPU was still a small department of the army, a far cry from the Special Forces Command, its successor.
Now she is a full colonel who heads the State House Anti-Corruption Unit. Nakalema is among the 1300 army officers who were promoted by the commander in chief, Gen Yoweri Kaguta yesterday.
Those who have worked with Nakalema will tell you that she deserves the promotion.
One said she should add “Hard Work” as her middle name.
“She simply works and works and sometimes you feel she is about to break down,” said one of the people who has worked closely with her.
As someone who does not take prisoners, Nakalema has brought zeal to the fight against corruption.
Within two years, her unit has saved billions of shillings of taxpayers money that would have been lost through graft.
Yet like many super achievers, Nakalema has not had it easy. Along the way, she has had to overcome several roadblocks.
After the 2016 elections, Colonel Nakalema was recommended to the Defence Academy, Joint Services Command and Staff College (JSCSC) in the United Kingdom where she undertook an advanced Command and Staff Course (ACSC 21).
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Procurement and Logistics Management (BPLM) of Nkumba University and, Uganda Diploma in Business Studies (UDBS), from Makerere University Business School (MUBS).
Between 2001- 2003, at the rank of a Lieutenant, she headed Accounts in Presidential Protection Unit (PPU).
At the rank of a Captain she was the Head of Finance in Presidential Guard Brigade (PGB) from 2003-2009, and Special Force Group (SFG) from 2009 – 2010.
As a Major, she was later elevated to Director of Finance – Special Forces Command (SFC) from 2011 – 2013.
At the same rank, she was then seconded to State House as Senior Private Secretary to the president.
Col Nakalema is married to Lt Col. Jimmy Asizua and they are blessed with children.