KAMPALA – The Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) commenced food distribution in Kampala District in support of Uganda Government efforts to fight COVID-19.
The food was purchased by the Office of the Prime Minister following a directive from the President of Uganda, H.E Yoweri Museveni, to feed people who survived on daily income and could now not subsist during the partial lockdown meant to curtail the spread of COVID-19.
Brig Gen Julius Biryabarema, the Second in Command of UPDF’s 1st Division who oversees the exercise thanked LC chairpersons for clearly identifying the right people who needed the help.
“In my thinking, the LCs did a good job in the identification of the people who really needed the food. Most of the beneficiaries are single mothers, widows, child-headed households, salon attendants, hawkers and taxi touts among other people who survived on daily income,” said Brig Gen Biryabarema.
Launched by Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Ruhakana Rugunda, the exercise started from Bwaise suburbs as a pilot location and will roll-out to all Local Council villages located in places commonly referred to as slums in Kampala and Wakiso Districts.
Brig Gen Biryabarema said the exercise registered success on the first day and hopes the rhythm will be maintained.
“The first success is that the beneficiaries responded positively to the mobilisation we did a day ahead of the distribution. We have not found any locked door. Everyone is seated by his/her door with the family to receive the food,” he said, adding that the challenge so far received is those living in posh houses that the LCs identified as salaried workers and well to do people also demanding for food.
“That is always expected. There will be a few complaints but we trust the wise decision made by the local leader to ensure the food goes to those who need it most,” said Brig Gen Biryabarema.
He affirmed that all the food delivered by the OPM are already packed and sealed in 6 kg packets – maize flour, 3kgs beans and 500gms salt. The Uganda Red Cross and Uganda Police Force are also taking part in the distribution exercise.
The Brig-Gen reiterated UPDF commitment in ensuring a timely and transparent distribution of the food items as guided by the Local Councils and in line with the guidelines issued by the government.