UPDF takes over Mumbere palace, security detail


Uganda Peoples Defence Forces [UPDF] soldiers will be manning Rwenzururu King Charles Wesley Mumbere’s palace and managing his personal security.

This was revealed by army spokesperson, Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, on Thursday.

Ankunda said the Omusinga has requested that the UPDF be redeployed at his palace following talks with the president Yoweri Museveni at the start of the week.

Museveni in a meeting at Mweya Safari Lodge in Kasese town told Mumbere that his local royal guards would have to be withdrawn if UPDF was to guard him.
The UPDF royal guards were withdrawn last week following a fight at the palace with traditional guards on April.

The fight led to the death of two soldiers, one boda boda rider and a royal guard.

Museveni told Mumbere on Monday that UPDF would not be mixed with the villagers [royal guards].

Explaining that this was dangerous, Museveni suggested that the Omusinga uses either royal guards or UPDF but not both to avoid blame games.

Speaking on the redeployment of UPDF to the palace, Ankunda said UPDF is redeploying at Omusinga’s palace on condition that royal guards withdraw.

“Omusinga has accepted,” Ankunda confirmed.

He said there is no bad blood between UPDF and the Omusinga.

“We had temporarily withdrawn to avoid parallel deployment,” he explained.

Ankunda says Police will from now on hoist the traditional flags at subcounties instead of royal guards.

“All traditional royal guards will be demobilised into wealth creation programmes,” Ankunda added.

According to Ankunda, some leaders are painting a picture of a situation out of hand in Rwenzori.

“The situation is not out of hand. Normalcy is returning.”

About 40 people have been killed in the attacks in the two districts of Kasese and Bundibugyo.

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