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Military to remain at Makerere longer than expected

Military to remain at Makerere longer than expected
Photo: Unknown

The withdrawal of the army from Makerere University will be gradual, the minister of Defense and Veterans Affairs Adolf Mwesige has said. 

The minister was On Wednesday, together with other officials from the Ministry including Lt Gen. Wilson Mbadi the Deputy Army Commander, the Minister of Internal Affairs Mario Obiga Kania appearing before the Parliamentary committee on education to answer queries of brutality against students by the army. 

The development follows accusations that military officers were deployed at the Ivory tower and brutalized students who were demonstrating against the 15% fees increment.

Students say teargas canisters were tossed into halls of residence affecting students who were not participating in the demonstration.  

During the meeting however, minister Mwesige told MPs led by the committee vice-chairperson John Twesigye that the army has been at the university since 2018 in the wake of murders, robberies in the country.

Adding that although they are withdrawing from Makerere University, the process will take time as they do not want to leave Makerere unattended to. 

Accoring to Lt .Gen Mbadi, the soldiers who brutalized the students are being investigated and that the army does not tolerate any form of brutality.

 The Minister for Internal Affairs  Mario Obiga Kania, says that as far as sexual harassment of students are concerned, they have never registered any complaints formally that during the chaos, any student was harassed sexually by the army 

However, the Kasese Woman MP also former leader of opposition in Parliament Winfred Kiiza questioned why UPDF appears to have deployed without knowledge of the university authorities.

This was followed by inquiries over reports that several people carry guns in and outside lecture rooms at the University.  

Mwesige told the committee that it is not a crime for spies to be at the University as long as they are doing their job. Adding that it is not permitted for someone to enter with guns inside the classrooms and if there is such a case they will follow it up.

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