Kampala, Uganda | URN | President Yoweri Museveni has said al-Shabaab militants killed 54 Ugandan soldiers including the commander during a recent attack in Somalia.
The President disclosed this to the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) MPs retreat at the National Leadership Institute-Kyankwanzi.
The President however did not give specific details regarding casualties, prisoners of war, or missing soldiers serving under the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS).
Mr. Museveni did mention that the high number of casualties could be attributed to the actions of Majors Oluka and Obbo, saying these commanders ordered the soldiers to retreat, resulting in their subsequent apprehension and impending court-martial charges.
“They have been apprehended and will face charges in the court-martial,” the president posted on his Twitter handle.
The president commended the remaining soldiers for their confidence, demonstrating remarkable resilience as they swiftly reorganized themselves and successfully recaptured the base previously overrun by the militants.
Furthermore, Mr. Museveni stated that the al-Shabaab militants, affiliated with Al-Qaeda, attempted another attack but were effectively repelled by the vigilant forces.
“These terrorists attempted another ill-fated attack on Baraawe town, but our forces dealt them a significant blow, forcing them to flee,” he said.
Museveni’s statement comes one week after the attack in Bulamarer, located approximately 130 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu. Al-Shabaab had previously claimed responsibility for the attack, asserting that they had caused the deaths of 137 soldiers and captured several others as prisoners of war.
While promising to provide further information following a comprehensive investigation by the military board of inquiry, Museveni expressed his condolences to the families of the fallen soldiers. He also admonished the field commanders for their role in the humiliating attack, reminding them that their primary purpose in Somalia is to fight against the enemy rather than focusing on earning what he called fat UN allowances.