Kampala | President Yoweri Museveni on Thursday reassured Ugandans that they should not panic or worry about the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) terrorists because they were defeated a long time ago.
Museveni who is celebrating his 79th birthday on September 8, 2023, addressed the country on Thursday on security and other issues of national importance.
He said, “ADF was finally defeated in 2007 just before the Commonwealth Conference when they tried to infiltrate from the Democratic Republic of Congo. 83 out of 100 of them were killed by the commandos in Semliki National Park.
“That was really the final blow on them as a military force. They went back to Congo and they stayed there. Now if they were wise, they should have kept low and not to try to foolishly provoke the security forces of Uganda,” Museveni said.
Museveni’s address comes days after unsuccessful bomb attack incidents in some areas of Kampala.
The 79-year-old said that after defeating ADF, they resorted to desperate measures of trying to infiltrate Uganda, plant bombs and even assassinate some of the citizens.
“These are really miscalculations by the ADF and we are going to finish them. The other day we diffused more than three (3) bombs. There was one bomb which was going to be planted in Kayanja’s Church which was intercepted and detonated.
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“There was another one in a place called Bunamwaya planted somewhere in a house. There was another one which was planted in a lodge, and it was going to explode later. Other materials for making bombs were also captured,” he revealed.
The “birthday boy” also revealed that so far the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence has arrested seven suspects who are behind the terrorist acts.
“Mainly the planners, we know them. Sometimes we don’t know the executors but eventually, we get to know them. Now the planners are in Congo so we are going for them, the government of Congo has permitted us,” he added.
“What we want to do is to make these people who want to kill Ugandans using chemicals lose their appetite for doing that. You do it, we kill you. The planner will die or be captured and prosecuted and so will the executor. Now, working with the Congo government, we are hunting for these people.”
As a precautionary measure to control the terrorist acts in the country, Museveni called upon Ugandans to be extra vigilant and report to security authorities any unfamiliar faces they see in their communities.
He further advised that they take a keen interest in new people who access places like churches, and bars among other public places by quizzing them about their identities.
“As we are hunting for these people in Congo, your job here is to see anybody you don’t know and ask them who they are and report to security authorities.”
For lodges, hotels and other housing estates, Museveni urged the managers to always ask for National Identity cards and take particulars of all people who access the facilities.
“The moment you block those people from hotels, lodges and housing estates that means, they must stay with families in homes and some of these groups don’t have sympathisers who are willing to risk helping them.
“For the buses and markets, you need to search people who are coming in. There’s no shortcut for that. But it will not take long because they are desperate. I don’t know whether to advise them to surrender because even if they surrender, especially the hardcore, we can’t just forgive them, they will have to be held accountable. The only option for them is to surrender or else they will die.”
President Kaguta also Felix Tshisekedi for permitting Uganda to hunt ADF terrorists in the territories of the Democratic Republic of Congo, saying that the move has since enabled them to directly launch offensives against the terrorist group.
According to him, UPDF couldn’t operate in DRC during Joseph Kabila’s reign.
“We started operating in sector one and sector two. These are the areas of Congo directly west of Rwenzori Mountain and slightly to the Northwest and we have cleared ADF from those areas. We are working with the Congo army. That area is now totally clear.
“ADF has been pushed far towards an area called Mambasa. Overall from sectors 1 and 2, the enemies killed are 567, 144 SMGs, 7 machine guns, 6 RPGs, 10 IEDs have been recovered and 50 terrorists have been captured alive and those who surrendered are 32.
“Now we are engaging our Congolese brothers about what to do next because some of these concepts are not well known in some of these areas.
“Fortunately, when I last met the Chief of Defence Forces of Congo, just like a week ago, they agreed on the concept of LDUs. Once we have cleared ADF in sectors one and two and we move forward to follow them where they are now, they can come back and work behind us and start causing trouble.
“That is why we need a local force to stay there to make sure that they don’t come back because we can ensure that no force hostile to the government of Congo or our government can congregate anywhere and survive,” he noted.