KAMPALA – The UPDF Chief of Defence Forces Gen David Muhoozi has Thursday 20 expressed Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) commitment to protecting human rights. This was stated at a meeting with the Executive Director of Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda Mr. Robert Ssempala at the Ministry of Defence and Veterans Affairs headquarters at Mbuya Hill.
The two discussed cooperation in the area of improving journalism standards as well as creating a harmonious relationship between UPDF and the media through improved channels of communication.
The UPDF Leadership established a fully-fledged human rights directorate that works with organizations in order to enhance UPDF’s capacity to promote human rights
Gen Muhoozi stressed that the UPDF cherishes the strong strategic partnership with the media in the course of executing it functions as laid out in the Constitution.
The CDF further noted that UPDF’s focus is to continue improving that relationship that has been built over time with the people. This will largely be through relentless efforts to create an environment through which people can realize full rights. “It is noteworthy that there are no genuine cases of offences or abuses by soldiers which get reported and go unpunished,” he emphasized.
He further emphasized that there are many cases which have been reported and on most occasions, action has been taken though not always publicised.
Mr. Robert Ssempala with his team appreciated and commended UPDF for the contribution it continues to make towards ensuring peace, security and stability of the country. “This kind of of devotion has a lot to do with hard work, discipline and sacrifice on your part and every member of your team”.
He further lauded UPDF for being reputed for its level of discipline noting that this has not only given people the confidence to associate with it but also to create further collaboration and partnerships in working towards ensuring a community that is embrasive of human rights. Mr Ssempala also expressed gratitude to the UPDF leadership for endeavouring to provide support to media practitioners caught up in situations where security forces are countering violence.
He asked to strengthen the working relationship between the UPDF and the Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda.
The meeting was attended by the Defence Spokesperson Brig Richard Karemire and the Deputy Chief of Military Intelligence Brig Henry Isoke among others.