The State Minister for Defence and Veteran Affairs Lt Col (Rtd) Bright Rwamirama has urged veterans to engage in economic activities as an alternative way of improving their income. He asked the retired soldiers to exploit opportunities in apiary, brick making as well as farming to eradicate poverty in their households.
Minister Rwamirama made the appeal on Monday while meeting veteran leaders from Teso, Karamoja and Jinja last week.
“Many people are not aware of the different options available to improve one’s quality of life. Therefore, venture into some of these new projects to raise extra income and bridge the gap between what government can do for you and what you can actually do for yourself,” Minister Rwamirama told the veterans.
He also advised them to form cooperatives to increase their marketing and bargaining power, both in Uganda and the region.
The Minister lauded President Yoweri Museveni for creating a Ministry that can handle all veteran issues and pledged to handle related issues effectively.
He further stressed that all the accumulated pension and gratuity for all veterans would be handled in time; on top of looking for mechanisms to uplift veterans’ salaries.
However, veterans requested government to consider quicker payment of their emoluments to beneficiaries in case of death. They also asked for more engagement with the line Minister.
Later, Minister Rwamirama who was officiating at the closure of a sensitization workshop on retirement for soldiers of Batch V11 at Non Commissioned Officers Academy (NCOA) Gaddafi barracks in Jinja on November 10, gave assurance to retiree’s that gratuity would be paid immediately.
He added that after a three months period, their pension would start rolling out but cautioned them against misusing their hard-earned money.