Chief of Defence Forces, Gen. David Muhoozi, has said the army is set to remunerate Local Defense Unit personnel with a monthly salary of Shs200,000, military fatigues and guns.
Gen Muhoozi was part of a Defence and Veteran Affairs Minister Adolf Mwesige – led delegation before Parliament’s Committee on Defence and Internal Affairs.
He said they will conduct patrols, do information collection, attend village security meetings and file patrol reports; they will wear Uganda People’s Defense Forces gazetted uniforms, adding that all enlisted persons will be subject to military law.
The exercise is in line with the intervention to fight the shooting cases of gruesome killings of people. During the Presidential address, the first citizen of Uganda Yoweri Museveni ordered for reviving of LDU, finger printing of all guns, installation of CCTV cameras in major towns, and equipping of forensic laboratories in Mbale and Gulu.
Defence State Minister (Veteran Affairs), Lt. Col. Bright Rwamirama said their payroll will be automated to avoid fraud and that in the meantime, “the initial phase will be 6,000 LDUs and will scale it up with time,” he added.
The group of enlisted persons will be taken through a four months training at Kaweweta UPDF training facility and they will be deployed at their respective villages to tackle the shooting cases of criminality.
Shadow Defense Minister, Muwanga Kivumbi, had inquired about the pay that the LDUs would receive and also faulted the army for opting to recruit groups he called ‘idlers’.
“Your preferred candidates are those without any formal jobs; so you are going to recruit idlers, at the operational level, who is in charge? Is it the army or police? To whom will they report,” he asked.
Insecurities has been witnessed in urban areas. Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP) Andrew Felix Kaweesi, Muslim clerics and the recent incident where the outspoken Assistant ASP Muhammed Kirumira was gunned down along a one Resty Nalinya by unknown assailants travelling motor cycles.