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Entebbe Residents Shun LDU Recruitment Exercise

According to Hajji Mbabali Njuki, the Deputy Resident District Commissioner , the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces-UPDF expects to recruit 2,000 LDU personnel in Entebbe and the neighbouring towns. However, only 278 people had applied by August 30, when the application process was expected to close in Entebbe.
Youths wait outside the building that hosts the Deputy RDC's office in Entebbe

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Residents of Entebbe municipality and surrounding areas of Kajjansi and Katabi have generally shunned the latest recruitment exercise for Local Defence Unit-LDU personnel.

According to Hajji Mbabali Njuki, the Deputy Resident District Commissioner ,  the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces-UPDF expects to recruit 2,000 LDU personnel in Entebbe and the neighbouring towns.

However,  only 278 people had applied by August 30, when the application process was expected to close in Entebbe.

They submitted applications to the Uganda People’s Defence Forces -UPDF liaison officer, Captain Simon Komunda Owomugisha. Owomugisha has been receiving the applications from office next to the Deputy RDC's office.

The  UPDF's plan is to recruit an additional 10,000 LDU personnel between August 23 to September 16.

The exercise commenced on Monday last week and interested individuals were required to submit handwritten applications to the  office of the Resident District Commissioner (RDC) between August 23 to 27.

Owomugisha told URN that UPDF extended the application deadline to August 30th.

However, only 13 people turned up in the extended period. 

Each applicant is required indicate their age, nationality, marital status and attach copies of their national identification card, academic credential and a letter from the LC 1 chairman or GISO.

Thereafter, a shortlist will be published at the respective district headquarters from  September 2 to 16. The  dates of reporting to recruitment centres have however not been disclosed.

The UPDF specifically wants Ugandan citizens who are physically fit, have no criminal record, aged 18 to 29 years, and hold a Uganda Certificate of Education -UCE or artisan certificate.

Hajji Njuki is perturbed that only 14 percent of the required number of people have submitted applications. He  says this is unfortunate because LDU personnel are critical in providing security within the communities.

Some of the potential applicants offer varied reasons why the people of Entebbe have shunned the exercise. Francis Omwoya  told URN that people could have shunned the exercise because of a rumour that only 200 to 300 people will be recruited from Entebbe.

Omwoya, aged 25 years and jobless, says  two of his friends who are children of army and police officers in Entebbe, told him that the RDC's office had already got the required number of applicants by last Thursday. "So I did not bother to apply," Omwoya adds, alleging thus: "I have realised that some officers want to block us from getting such jobs so that their relatives  are recruited."

Entebbe hosts nine military barracks including Banga, Busambaga, Nsamizi, Kigungu and  Katabi among other places. 

However  20 year-old Andrew Opio Ocaya says he applied even though he also heard that only 300 people would be recruited from Entebbe.

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However Evelyn Kansiime, aged 54 years, says many youths could have shunned the exercise because they prefer to join the army. "LDU personnel got a bad name last year because of what they did to people in the first lockdown," she says. "So young people would rather become professional soldiers."

Kansime had escorted her 19-year-old daughter Irene Ampaire  who submitted her application on the day of  deadline.

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