No money for LDUs- minister

Thursday January 24 2019



Minister Bright Rwamirama

Minister Bright Rwamirama 

By Nelson Wesonga

Kampala. The Defence ministry does not have the Shs9.25 billion needed to cater for Local Defence Unit (LDUs) salaries, the State Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Mr Bright Rwamirama, has said.
“We have a shortfall,” Mr Rwamirama told the House Committee on Defence and Internal Affairs in Kampala yesterday.
“An additional wage allocation of Shs9.2 billion is required up to the end of 2018/2019 financial year to cater for this category,” Mr Rwamirama said.
Last year, Chief of Defence Forces David Muhoozi told the committee that the monthly stipend for each recruit is Shs200,000.
It is not clear if Shs9.25b includes arrears.
According to Mr Rwamirama, the recruits are still undergoing training.
Following the shooting in June 2018 of the then Arua Municipality Member of Parliament Ibrahim Abiriga and his brother Saidi Kongo, President Museveni outlined a number of measures the government would undertake to curb crime.
One of the measures was to recruit LDUs in major towns, starting with the Kampala Metropolitan area.
The other measure was the installation of closed circuit television cameras along major highways.
While the recruits have been undergoing drills, they are yet to be deployed.
CCTV cameras now hang over highways and a staffed observation room commissioned.
According to Mr Rwamirama, Shs24.1 billion is also needed for 4, 000 army recruits, who are undergoing training and are expected to be included on the payment starting in August last year, but is yet to be provided.
He said the government should ‘desist from recruiting without prior planning’.
According to the Budget Framework Paper, the Defence ministry’s budget for Financial Year 2019/2020 will be Shs1.8t.
This would be a reduction by Shs123 billion.
“The reduction will adversely affect the ministry’s ability to deliver on its mandate,” Mr Rwamirama said.
“The ministry seeks support of the committee to have the resources reinstated,” he added

Advertisement