The Uganda state minister for defence Gen. Jeje Odong has indicated that the new machine to destroy firearms will help control emissions and thus help in environmental conservation.
Speaking at a ceremony to receive the new machine donated by the British government to help destroy unwanted firearms mostly captured by Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) from Uganda criminal gangs, Karimojong cattle rustlers and surrendering rebels, Odong said the machine will also help speed up the disarmnent process especially in Northern Uganda and the Karamoja region.
The Uganda Army has been using rudimentary methods of disposing off firearms. In most cases firewood and petrol has been used to destroy the unwanted firearms. The exercise emits a lot of carbondioxide leading to Global warming. Carbondioxide destroys the Ozone layer which helps protect the earth surface from heat.
Small arms in Uganda are especially widespread in Northern Uganda as a result of the over 20 year Northern Uganda Lords Resistance Army (LRA) insurgency and the Eastern Uganda region of Karamoja as a result of widespread acts of cattle rustling.
Delays in destroying the weapons sometimes risks putting them back in the hands of Uganda criminal gangs.
The minister says the machine will also help improve security in the country.
By Solomon Akugizibwe