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Museveni: Army to educate children of soldier who killed minister, himself

Uganda President Yoweri Museveni has announced the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UDPF) will provide free education to the family of the soldier who recently shot and killed a minister in Kampala before turning the gun on himself.

The Head of State made the call at the funeral of Labour Minister Charles Engola on May 10, 2023.

Mr Engola was shot dead by his bodyguard namely Wilson Sabiiti, an army private, at his Kampala home as he was preparing to leave for work. Sabiiti is reported to also have injured a colleague before turning the gun and killing himself.

President Museveni described the fallen minister as a “sacrificial lamb” and called for the incident to inspire the country to address the challenges it faces.

“The army will educate the soldiers’ children for free, from nursery to secondary school,” the Head of State said.

President Museveni, who has ruled Uganda for close to four decades, also appeared to acknowledge that the army were on low salaries but ruled out the possibility of increasing their pay.

“We cannot pay high salaries to our soldiers. If we pay high salaries to our soldiers, we shall not be able to buy equipment for them or get enough manpower when we need money,” He said.

Media reports indicate the deceased soldier who had fathered six children with four baby mamas earned a reported sh18,000.

Mr Sabiiti is said to have complained about his unpaid salary before the incident.

According to an eyewitness, after shooting the minister, Sabiiti shot in the air severally to warn civilians at Kyanja town before he went into a nearby salon, chased everyone out, and turned the gun on himself.

The deceased soldier reportedly claimed the minister owed him four million Ugandan shillings and that his own children were not attending school while the minister’s children were.

“The guard said he hadn’t been paid Ush4 million (about $1,000). He said he had a pregnant woman and his children were not going to school yet the minister’s children were schooling,” the eyewitness said.

President Museveni’s announcement to provide free education for Sabiiti’s family is seen as a gesture of support for the soldier’s loved ones, who may be struggling with the loss of their provider.

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