THE Chief of Defence Forces, Gen. Aronda Nyakairima, yesterday said the late Brig. Noble Mayombo symbolised unity in the army which should be maintained.
Paying tribute to his former Permanent Secretary during a special session of Parliament yesterday, Aronda said Mayombo served the army with honour, dedication and conviction to the last day.
â€œHis contribution towards modernising the UPDF was an ideal he lived to see through. In all his dedicated service, he was always in pursuit of internal cohesion in the UPDF. He was an ardent believer of team work,â€ Aronda said.
â€œWe stood together with Mayombo during difficult times, tackling insurgencies and we triumphed.
We strongly believe people united cannot be defeated. We should continue on the path for which he stood.â€
Aronda said one of Mayomboâ€™s achievements during his short time as the Permanent Secretary in the defence ministry was the repair and return of a C-130 army transport plane, which he found at the airport as he was waiting for Mayomboâ€™s body.
Defence minister Dr. Crispus Kiyonga described the late Brigadier as a leader of rare quality and a nationalist who was committed to his work.
Kiyonga said as a permanent secretary, Mayombo was devoted to fundamentally improve the accounting system in the Ministry of Defence and the UPDF.
Kiyonga quoted Mayombo to have said during one of the meetings: â€˜We came to build a new Uganda. How can we wait for the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament to tell us what to do? We are here not because we lack what to do but to answer a patriotic call.â€
The defence minister said Mayombo worked long hours, sometimes 24 hours a day.
â€œHis character was consultative. As PS, he impressed me as a person of his own quality. All of us will agree that he was very intelligent, a good listener and flexible, ready to take new positions when convinced.â€
Security minister Amama Mbabazi called Mayombo an â€œoutstanding performerâ€. His death, he said, was a great loss to his family, the entire security system, the country and to the African Revolutionary Movement.
â€œOur hope is not dead. A leader lies dead but his memory lives. Comrade Mayombo, the struggle continues,â€ he vowed. â€œMayombo was too young to die. He appeared and disappeared like a celestial object. He rose fast and also disappeared fast,â€ noted Col. Tom Butime.
Intelligence coordinator General David Tinyefuza added: â€œThe passing away of Noble is the passing of a great person. He was ferociously committed to this country. He was very fair-minded. When I had my own battles of trying to get out of the army, it was him and General Saleh who came to me and took me aside.â€
The struggle continues, declares UPDF