By Spy Uganda
HE Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has issued a condolence message to all the families of the soldiers who perished in Somalia during a deadly Al Shabab raid on Uganda’s army base.
Museveni says the raid occurred in the night of Thursday, at the 11th hour of the night and ten minutes (5.30am of Friday).
He vows that it is criminal for anybody involved, to send into such a theatre soldiers who are either not suited for that mission or not properly prepared for it.
UPDF has had both successful and unsuccessful operations in Somalia since 2007.
“In the area of Bulo-Mareer, there was an FOB (Forward Operational Base) manned by a company of UPDF soldiers. Those defences are quite strong although they are guarded by light weapons,” Museveni explains.
He adds that there were two tanks, two 14.5mm anti- air-craft guns and a 107mm Katyusha rocket launcher.
Museveni says that with the above weapons, some of the soldiers did not perform as expected and panicked, which disorganized them and the Al-Shabaab took advantage of that to overran the base and destroy some of the equipment.
“The panic, it seems, was totally unnecessary because, in fact, both the anti-tank ditch and our soldiers had destroyed the 3 vehicles of explosives outside the FOB. The suicide bombers or whatever, were forced to blow themselves up before they gained entry into the base,” says Museveni.
He adds that moreover, “our UAVs were watching the whole scenario from up in the sky and directing fire. The CDF has set up a Board of Inquiry (BOI) and the full facts will come out, including the details of the casualties.”
The Commander of the Armed Forces says that many of the soldiers withdrew to the next FOB, nine kilometres away the group of terrorists which had about 800 according to the UAVs.
“Hence, it was a missed opportunity, to annihilate them. The operations are continuing and they will regret their actions,” says Museveni adding;
“Condolences to the country and the families of those who died. This unfortunate incident should be used to remind all those concerned, that operations in Somalia and other theatres, are combat missions and not welfare missions where you can access UN allowances.”