Special Reports

Army recruits 3,000 soldiers after Somalia disaster


CDF Katumba inspects guard of honor recently

The UPDF Chief of Defence Forces, Gen Edward Katumba Wamala, on Thursday travelled to Nairobi to check on UPDF soldiers who were wounded in a Tuesday Al-Shabaab attack.

Gen Katumba visited 10 wounded soldiers at Karen Hospital where they were admitted with serious injuries.

In a statement, Katumba said the UPDF was humbled by the “brotherly and professional care the government and people of Kenya have given to our troops who get injured in combat since we started operating under Amison”.

The statement said the injured are in a normal condition except three of them who were critically injured.

Katumba had earlier visited the UPDF base in Janaale, south of Mogadishu where the attack took place claiming the lives of 12 soldiers on spot.

According to Maj Henry Obbo, the deputy spokesperson, UPDF was planning to deploy attack helicopters in the Somalia operations.

“It would be much easier if we had the helicopters because they are a force multiplier. We would be performing much better in terms of surveillance and engaging the enemy from source,” he is quoted as saying.

New recruits

Meanwhile, UPDF spokesperson, Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, said the army will recruit new 3,000 soldiers this September.

“Each District will be allocated a quota, applicants should have sat at least 0 level exams 2 years ago. I caution the youth against joining rebel groups.”

Ankunda quotes Katumba saying the UPDF has defeated 26 rebel groups.

“I condemn the local council officers who often recommend people who lack the required academic qualifications.”

He says the government’s decision to send troops to neighbouring countries shows that UPDF is strong, “we have always been sending troops on peace missions abroad, but I have never seen UN troops here to maintain stability”.

“However, the Army has wiped out all the bad elements who wanted to destabilize the country.”

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