- The ministry is working to ensure that the issue of the veterans is addressed and assured them that in 2-3 years’ time, all the veterans will be paid
- At least 2,700 files of the veterans stuck at Ministry of Public Service
- Some of the veterans have died without accessing their benefits
- The legal regime of the UPDF act didn’t cover the affairs of the veterans so they had to go and prepare in order to deal with the challenges of the veterans
By Elema Robert
Yumbe- The State Minister for Defence and Veterans Affairs Lt Col. (Rtd) Bright Rwamirama has said, there is need for patience among the veterans in West Nile region as the government is yet planning to pay their pensions and gratuity.
The minister made the remark while meeting the veterans of Moyo, Adjumani, Yumbe and Koboko to update the veterans on the progress made to address the challenges of getting gratuity and accessing pension payroll at Yumbe district headquarters.
The minister said it has been public service handling the affairs of the Veterans but now it is the ministry of defence handling it.
He said they inherited a lot of challenges in streamlining the Veteran’s directorate because they did not have a policy in place.
“In March this year, we had 2,700 files of the veterans stuck in public service so we had to move data from public service and since last year we have been fighting with public service to get the files back to defence. But up to now, 200 files are not transferred to defence. We are in the process of getting all the data of the Veterans and paying all of them in the near future,” he said.
Mr Yassin Olega the representative of the Veterans, said: “The Veterans from the districts of Moyo, Yumbe, Adjumani and Koboko have their associations registered so it would be easy if seed capital was provided to carry out with their activities. The problems Veterans have been experiencing are lack of representation in councils and non-involvement in government programs.”
Mr Sunday Alioni Odria the MP for Aringa South said Veterans have contributed a lot to the government and priority should be given to them because it is on record that the veterans contributed in the signing of peace agreement in the West Nile region.
He said the Veterans should ensure their accounts are active for effective payment to avoid bouncing back of the monies and they should coordinate with the zonal officers to address their problems.