By Spy Uganda
Kenya, Uganda Security Bosses Meet In Mbale Over Regional Security Concerns
Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) and the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) held a Joint Defence Committee Meeting (JDC) in Mbale Resort Hotel, Mbale, Uganda to discuss among others security issues.
Officials said the bilateral engagement strengthened the existing relations between KDF and UPDF and also sought to address security challenges within the region.
Brig Edward Rugendo of the Kenya Defence Forces commended UPDF leadership for its continued commitment towards addressing the common regional security challenges.
He also underscored the importance of partnership between the two partner states in facilitating better opportunities and better livelihoods for all East Africans.
“The basis of existing strong bilateral relations between our two countries is anchored on sharing similar interests, beliefs, and traditions. It is more so evident by looking at communities that live along our borders.”
“We should, therefore, endeavour to foster unity so that we can continue to take advantage of available opportunities and overcome the challenges that should befall us,” he said.
The meeting took place between August 17-18, 2023.
Maj Gen Don William Nabasa of the UPDF also noted the shared security challenges, including terrorism, livestock theft, and the recurring security incidences on Lake Victoria that have impacted peace and security in the region.
He explained that synergy between the two nations is crucial to strengthening both countries’ defences and also facilitating the socio-economic growth and transformation of not only the two countries but the entire East African Community region.
The team will come up with strategies to be used in addressing the common crimes in the region that need to be addressed jointly.
Meanwhile, Kenya’s Defence Cabinet Secretary (CS) Aden held bilateral talks with the Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC) and the Secretary to the Summit of EAC Heads of State and Government Peter Mathuki in Nairobi.
The CS affirmed Kenya’s commitment to continue championing all efforts aimed at having a more cohesive and integrated community of nations to realise the much desired regional peace, securing and prosperity.
Officials said the two discussed a wide range of issues that are of mutual benefit to the EAC Member States and explored areas of possible cooperation and partnership.
Mathuki assured the Secretary General of Kenya’s absolute support towards the realisation of the EAC Agenda for the region.
This comes at a time when Kenya is seeking to renew the KDF mandate at the East African Community Regional Force (EACRF) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Last week, Duale hosted the Director of the Eastern Africa Standby Force (EASF) Brig Paul Njema and the Chairperson of Friends of EASF Col Jen Gynther Lindvig at the Defence Headquarters, Nairobi.
The CS reiterated that Kenya appreciates every form of support from her partners in the pursuit of peace and stability not only in the country but also in the entire region.
Duale expressed Kenya’s gratitude for the firm and active participation of the EASF friends in supporting the Force’s mandate.
He reaffirmed the commitment to the prudent use of resources pooled together by all our partners to achieve their intended purpose.
EASF is one of the multi-dimensional Forces of the African Standby Force (ASF) that comprises the military, police and civilian component.