The first National Defence College for the Ugandan army, the UPDF has started operations, the Nile Post has learnt.
On Monday, the UPDF Joint Chief Of Staff Maj Gen Leopold Kyanda visited the college in Jinja to see the operations.
“You are the pioneers of this College and it is a difficult task since it is new but my role here is to encourage you. Within six months you have done a lot and I do encourage you to keep it up,” Kyanda said.
In his remarks, the commandant of the National Defence College , Maj Gen Francis Okello said the plans to establish the facility started in 2013 and that up to four task forces were set up to plan the establishment of the college.
During the opening ceremony, the commandant oriented everyone but also showed them the camp lay out on the Google map showing all the facilities in the college which including a hospital, lecture rooms, officers’ mess, residences among others.
The college is the first of its kind in Uganda and it will be the think tank for the government.
It will attract participants at the level of one star general officers, Senior officers at the rank of Colonel and also civilians in future.
The lectures for the first intake will commence in January with about 20 participants and it will be affiliated to Makerere University.
The National Defence College will show the impact of defence, security and development.
Ugandan army officers currently fly to countries including Kenya, UK and China among others that have National Defence Colleges for further studies.
However, with the opening of the National Defence College, these will no longer be flying out for similar studies.
Speaking in 2018 about the facility, the then Chief of Defence Forces, Gen David Muhoozi described the setting up of a National Defence College as a big step towards professionalization of the Ugandan army.
“The UPDF has made many strides in training but we have been missing a flagship institution that provides professional joint military education at Strategic level,” Gen Muhoozi noted.
He said that in order to manage complexity, uncertainty, changes and surprise in the contemporary security environment, there is always a need to develop institutions like the National Defence College for strategic level training.
The CDF said he was delighted that a number of UPDF senior officers have the knowledge, experience and background information having attended National Defence Colleges in other countries like Kenya, UK and China but stressed that the Ugandan army leadership has to put in place their own college that is in line with Uganda’s context and environment in order to achieve desired national goals.
SOURCE: Nile Post