Barely a month after Kyadondo East legislator Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine launched the ‘Red Beret Movement’, government has hitherto banned the wearing or selling of red berets.
According to Adolf Mwesigye, the Minister of Defence and Veteran Affairs, the red beret is part of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces’ marks, accessories, insignia, decoration and uniform as provided for under section 160 of the UPDF Act 2005.
“The public is hereby informed that the marks accessories, insignia, decoration and uniforms specified in the schedule to this notice are property of the state or classified stores and anyone found in unlawful possession, selling or dealing in them shall be prosecuted under the UPDF Act of 2005,”reads in part the government gazette dated September 18, 2019.
It adds, “It is prohibited to wear or use any decoration supplied or authorised for use by any member of the defence forces or any decoration so nearly resembling that decoration and likely to deceive the public.”
When convicted, one will get a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
Section 119 (1) of the UPDF Act 2005 stipulates that every person, not otherwise subject to military law and is found in unlawful possession of (equipment ordinarily being the monopoly of the Defence Forces and other classified stores as prescribed, is subject to military law and can be tried in military courts as appropriate.
Richard Karemire, the army spokesman said the gazette manifests the commitment to define identity and outlook of a professional army as well as adhering to the EAC protocols.
“The dress code for the UPDF has been gazette and the action was endorse by the top organs of the army which also commended the dress committee for concluding the task assigned to it years back. This development is a milestone in the long history of the UPDF,” brig. Karemire tweeted.
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