Hepatitis B Worries UPDF Recruitment Team In Hoima

At least six people missed being recruited into the army at Hoima recruitment centre after testing positive to Hepatitis B virus.

Audio 3

At least six people missed being recruited into the army at Hoima recruitment centre after testing positive to Hepatitis B virus.

The Uganda People's Defence Forces -UPDF medics blame this on lack of routine medical tests by Ugandans.

Major Ceaser Olweny, the UPDF 4th Division Public Relations Officer who spoke on behalf of the Hoima recruitment team on Sunday, told Uganda Radio Network that of the eight candidates who failed medical tests at Boma grounds, six tested positive to Hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B is a liver infection that is caused by a virus and can quickly cause death if not detected and treated early.

Major Olweny says that most people happen to know their health status when subjected to such mandatory tests instead of managing their bodies through routine voluntary tests. 

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One other candidate was knocked out of the exercise at the first stage of documents verification as early as 7am after fainting while in the queue. 

Olweny later confirmed that the young man whose identities could not be revealed to the media was found with epilepsy by the medical team which treated him.

Thirty-nine people from Hoima and another eight from Bulisa district were recruited into the army.

Elsewhere, the army also recruited 38 from Kibaale where as newly created districts of Kakumiro and Kagadi got eight recruits each during the competitive exercise held in Kibaale town on Sunday.

On the same day, the UPDF recruited 20 from Masindi and 18 from Kiryandongo districts.

This makes the number of 140 recruits from Bunyoro at the three recruitment centres on Sunday.

In Hoima, the only female candidate that had got papers verified and finished the 5km run on time could not pass the written test, something that left the recruitment officers puzzled.

Major Olweny told Uganda Radio Network that the girl whose particulars could not be revealed to avoid victimisation from the public failed to write her name and the district. She also failed the five questions which included naming five counties in Bunyoro, naming the prime minister of Uganda, the first lady of Uganda and the Chief of Defence Forces. 

URN has seen a copy of her blank answer sheet.

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Ambrose Mwesigye, the Hoima deputy Resident District Commissioner told the hundreds who were turned away to remain peaceful, saying there are many ways a Ugandan can serve the country. He said that those turned away because they could not meet the requirement of sitting senior four in 2014 and 2015, must also seek further studies to be able to suit this competitive world.

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Obed Businge, who says he must try again next year, blames himself for turning up late after finding the mandatory running exercise done.