By Alfred Wasike
THE defence ministry has shifted from Bombo to its new headquarters on Mbuya hill, a city suburb. Bombo remains the headquarters of the UPDF Land Forces.
The UPDFâ€™s commander of construction and engineering, Brig. Sabiiti Mutebile, said the three-storeyed block cost sh750m.
â€œThis building took us seven months to complete,â€ he told guests during the opening of the structure.
State defence minister Ruth Nankabirwa, deputy chief of defence forces Lt. Gen. Edward Katumba Wamala, defence ministry permanent secretary Rosette Byengoma and other officials planted trees in the compound as the UPDF brass band played patriotic songs.
Karamoja MPs Remigio Achia (Pian) and Abura Pirir (Matheniko) triggered prolonged applause when they matched and sang along the UPDF music praising President Yoweri Museveni, the NRM, the UPDF and Uganda.
Nankabirwa said the ministry would construct the headquarters for the airforce in Nakasongola and a military hospital at Kawanda near the agricultural research station.
â€œThese plans are a result of the comprehensive defence review in the army and the ministry.â€
She said the ministry, which had shifted to several places as its headquarters, was â€œfinally at homeâ€.
The former Republic House (Bulange), Uganda Club/Mbuya and Bombo have acted as the ministryâ€™s headquarters.
Nankabirwa said the relocation would cut the costs of time and fuel spent on commuting to and from Bombo.
Byengoma said the ministryâ€™s accountability had improved.
The speakers paid tribute to the late permanent secretary, Brig. Noble Mayombo, for his role in the defence review and construction of the headquarters.