The First Son, also the Commander of the Land Forces, Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba has said that veteran journalist, Andrew Mwenda has done nothing wrong by donning a UPDF uniform despite not being a soldier
“My bro Mwenda is part of the massive fan base that UPDF has because of the great work we do. They want to wear our uniforms, hold our guns and even pretend to fly our aircrafts. It means nothing,” Muhoozi tweeted.
Kainerugaba explained that people like Mwenda because of their love for the force, they sometimes get excited.
Mwenda came under fire last week following videos that made rounds on social media, where he was captured in a UPDF uniform as he sat in one of the country’s helicopters.
Mwenda who was very excited was seen greeting a number of UPDF soldiers including the chopper’s pilots as he donned the uniform.
The video caused debate on social media with many blaming the army for exhibiting double standards because it has previously arrested some people for being in possession of military wares like uniforms.
The UPDF spokesperson, Brig Flavia Byekwaso said there are circumstances under which a civilian is allowed to put on a military uniform, adding the same could have happened during Mwenda’s case.
“I want to believe that Andrew(Mwenda) had prior permission. We must take cognisant of the fact that the law allows a civilian to don a military uniform. Article 160 of the UPDF Act talks about circumstances under which a civilian can put on a military uniform. I want the public to know this provision is there,”Byekwaso said.
Mwenda is a brother to UPDF Mountain Division and Operation Shujaa commander, Maj Gen Kayanja Muhanga.
Section 119 (1) of the UPDF Act 2005 stipulates that every person, not otherwise subject to military law and is found in unlawful possession of ( equipment ordinarily being the monopoly of the Defence Forces and other classified stores as prescribed, is subject to military law and can be tried in military courts as appropriate