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Uganda decorates first female Brigadier

By Vision Reporter

Added 22nd September 2011 03:00 AM

The army on Wednesday decorated eight senior officers recently promoted, among them Brig. Proscovia Nalweyiso, the first woman to rise to that rank in the history of the country.

The army on Wednesday decorated eight senior officers recently promoted, among them Brig. Proscovia Nalweyiso, the first woman to rise to that rank in the history of the country.

By Steven Candia

The army on Wednesday decorated eight senior officers recently promoted, among them Brig. Proscovia Nalweyiso, the first woman to rise to that rank in the history of the country.

The colorful function, complete with the army brass band and presided over by the deputy chief of defence forces Lt. Gen. Ivan Koreta was held at the Mbuya Ministry of defence headquarters in Kampala.

Number RO 00217 Brig. Nalweyiso, a senior presidential advisor who joined the then National Resistance Army, now UPDF in 1982 was the third among the officers to be decorated.

Only moments prior to her decoration the master of ceremony, army spokesperson Lt. Col Felix Kulayigye announced the significance of the occasion, given her rise.

“This is a historical and joyous occasion most especially because of Brig. Nalweyiso, the first woman in the country to become a General,” Kulayigye said drawing a thunderous applause from those present.

A Brigadier is a one star General. Nalweyiso was equally elated. In a brief interview shortly after the incident, Nalweyiso declared; “I am 75 percent there.”

Nalweyiso is among nine senior army officers, among them Maj. Gen. Robert Rusoke, promoted mid this month by President Yoweri Museveni, who is also the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. Brig. Paul Lokech, contingent commander of the UPDF in Somalia, could not attend given his duty station.

Speaking at the ceremony Koreta saluted the officers upon their promotion but cautioned them as to the challenges that lie ahead. “You should be aware that the higher you climb the hotter it becomes,” Koreta said.

First to be decorated was Rusoke, the Joint Chief of Staff who spoke on behalf of the decorated officers and pledged their loyalty to serve the nation.

Those decorated included Brig. Kasita Gowa; Brig. Michael Okiding, Brig. Sam Kawuma, Brig. Moses Rwakitarate, Brig. Jacob Musajaawaza and Brig. John Mateka. Most of the officers, who were accompanied by their relatives to the function, were decorated by their spouses.

In the promotions Gowa was appointed deputy commandant senior command and staff college Kimaka; Brig. Okiding was retained as acting commander, field artillery division (FAD), Brig. Kavuma is the fifth division commander while Brig. Rwakitarate remains chief of staff of the Air force.

Uganda decorates first female Brigadier

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