Gulu, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) has called for the need for more sensitization of voters and citizens against violence.
The army is concerned about the increasing level of violent protests and confrontation of armed forces by protestors being recorded in the country ahead of the 2021 General Elections.
Maj. Gen. Sam Kavuma, the Deputy Commander of the Land Forces said that the violence and brutality which is currently being witnessed in the country during the campaigns clearly shows that there is need for more awareness to be carried out against violence.
He added that resistance in the country is being witnessed across all categories of people who are both voters and non-voters.
Maj. Gen. Francis Okello noted that the violence and hate speech being witnessed during the election period should also be condemned and amicably handled lest it gets out of hand and develop into something else.
The officers were on Friday speaking during the launch of the National Initiative for Civic Education in Uganda held at the Gulu University Main Library in Gulu City.
The event was attended by hundreds of UPDF officials, civil society organizations and officials of the Operation Wealth Creation program.
Some of the top UPDF officers who attended include; Brigadier Felix Kulaigye, the representative of UPDF in Parliament, Forth Division Army Commander Brig. Gen. Bonny Bamwiseki, General Salim Saleh and the Chief of Defense Forces General David Muhoozi among others.
Maj. Gen. Henry Masiko, the UPDF Chief Political Commissar said that the government should create a link between voters and security officers through awareness creation on the roles of each category.
In response to the concerns, Crispin Kaheru, the General Secretary for the National Initiative for Civic Education in Uganda (NICE) said that the initiative that targets sensitizing Ugandans against violence and rights by use of the media and person to person methodologies is a good move.
He added that Ugandans should learn that there is still life after elections and they should learn to live with anyone who has been elected.
Gen. Salim Saleh who officially launched the initiative said that the UPDF and stakeholders will immediately start the implementation of massive sensitization Ugandans against violence and all its mitigation processes.
With less than two months into the general elections, Uganda has continuously witnessed waves of violent protests by voters and opposition candidates which have led to the death of more than 50 people, several injured and hundreds arrested.
Uganda goes to polls come 14th January 2021.