The President of the republic of Uganda H.E General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has been awarded with the “Order of Katonga”, the highest military decoration of the Uganda Honour system.
The prestigious award, awarded very rarely for extraordinary heroism was bestowed unto the President during the 42nd Tarehe Sita anniversary held at Kakyeka Stadium in Mbarara District today, 6th February 2023.
President Museveni became the third person to get this medal after former President of Libya the late Col Muammar Guddafi awarded on April 6th 2004 and former President of Tanzania the late Julius Nyerere awarded in July 2007.
A total of 66 medals were awarded in different categories to officers from the UPDF, Uganda Police forces and Uganda Prisons services.
Senior officers from the UPDF who got awards included Gen. Salim Saleh, Gen Ivan Koreta and Brig Gen Bosco Omure who were awarded Kabelga star medals for their bravery and contributions to the war that liberated Uganda. Other officers in the Front for National Salvation (FRONASA) were awarded with the Luwero Triangle medal.
The Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) Gen. Wilson Mbasu Mbadi revealed through Tarehe Sita, UPDF uses pro-people approach and Civil-Military cooperation to foster harmony between the civilian population and the Army.
During the Tarehe Sita and Defence Forces week celebrations, UPDF conducts different Community outreach programs such as medical camps, engineering works, cleaning of cities, planting of trees, sensitizing the population about the mandate of the force among others.
In his speech, the President who was decorated by the Chief Justice Alphonse Owiny Dolo, reckoned on how the 6th of February marked the change of events after the attack on Kabamba that ushered in the new government.
He cautioned the UPDF army from adopting brutality and corruption of the past regimes army. In addition he warned against sectarianism and rooted for Pan Africanism and democracy.
The President also thanked Mwalimu Kambarage Julius Nyerere of Tanzania and Col Muamar Gaddafi of Libya for the support during the bush war.
In his speech the president warned against corruption in public service and promised to deal with the vice with an iron hand.
He also strongly warned against the people settling in wetlands and involved in environmental degradation and urged Ugandans to stay away from wetlands.
In his remarks the president thanked all who organized the celebrations and in a special way appreciated the UPDF medals committee for having recognized him and awarded him the highest medal and having recognized others for their contribution in the struggle.
Tarehe Sita is the day UPDF marks the attack on Kabamba barracks in 1981 which launched the five-year struggle that brought the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government to power 36 years ago. The day is celebrated every 6th of February.