The head of state, also commander in chief of Uganda Armed Forces, President Yoweri Museveni has commissioned the Nyoka Military Conversion facility at Magamaga military barracks in Jinja District.
For the last 6 years, the project has been underway, and it consists of the manufacturing and assembling of military Nyoka 4x4 mine and ballistic protected vehicles in Uganda as a cost effective option for urban and rural operations by the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF).
Impala Services and Logistics, a South African company which got a contract with the Ministry of Defence to start the manufacturing and assembling of the vehicles, is at the helm of the project.
On Wednesday after touring the facility, President Museveni saluted the UPDF for exhibiting self-reliance, a quality that all Africans need.
“Africans have slept for the last 500 years. It is a long time and I am very glad to see that you are waking up a little bit and I am here to congratulate you. What is crucial is overcoming the psychological barrier of helplessness. This is just the beginning. You can do much more,” he said.
Mr. Museveni further called for integrated industries adding that this would help create jobs and save money for the country. He thanked Impala Services and Logistics for having partnered with the UPDF and for positively using technology to build improved military vehicles.
“I am very grateful to the CEO of Impala. He was a cadre of the ANC and joined the South African Army but later retired. His partnering with us is ideological,” he noted.
Gen. David Muhoozi, the Chief of the Defense Forces thanked the President for his guidance on the importance of capacity building and self-reliance, arguing that through the project, the UPDF has acquired skills, knowledge, technological transfer and procured industrial equipment for manufacturing.