The vision of the Ministry is to support the UPDF to transform it into a modern, professional, efficient and accountable force anchored on a strong civil–military partnership

UPDF Leadership

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H.E GEN YOWERI KAGUTA MUSEVENI
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF UGANDA AND COMMANDER IN CHIEF (CIC) OF THE UPDF
H.E GEN YOWERI KAGUTA MUSEVENI

President Yoweri Museveni is a Ugandan politician and military leader who has been in power since 1986. He was born on September 15, 1944, in Ntungamo, southwestern Uganda.

Museveni came to power after a five-year guerrilla war in which he led the National Resistance Army (NRA) against the government of Milton Obote. Since then, he has been reelected in a series of contested elections, with the most recent being in January 2021.

Under Museveni’s leadership, Uganda has experienced economic growth and development, with poverty rates decreasing and access to education and healthcare improving. He has implemented policies aimed at promoting agriculture, infrastructure development, and foreign investment.

Museveni has also been praised for his efforts to bring peace and stability to Uganda, ending decades of civil war and insurgency in the northern part of the country.

Furthermore, he has played a key role in regional politics, particularly in the East African Community, promoting integration and cooperation among African nations. He has been a vocal advocate for African unity and self-sufficiency, and has championed the cause of African development and progress on the international stage.

In addition, President Museveni has been recognized for his leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS in Uganda, with the country being hailed as a model for other nations in terms of its comprehensive approach to prevention, treatment, and care.

GEN WILSON MBASU MBADI
CHIEF OF DEFENCE FORCES (CDF)
GEN WILSON MBASU MBADI

General Wilson Mbasu Mbadi is a high-ranking military officer in the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) who currently holds the position of Chief of Defense Forces, the most senior position in Uganda’s military. He assumed this role on 24 June 2021, succeeding General David Muhoozi, who was appointed State Minister of Internal Affairs.

Prior to his current position, General Mbadi served as the Deputy Chief of Defense Forces from January 2017 to June 2021, holding the rank of Lieutenant General. He replaced Lieutenant General Charles Angina, who became Deputy Commander of Operation Wealth Creation. From May 2013 to January 2017, he served as the Joint Chief of Staff of the UPDF, before being replaced by Major General Joseph Musanyufu.

Education

Wilson Mbadi joined the Uganda military in 1986 and was commissioned in 1991 after completing a one-year Officer Cadet course at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the United Kingdom, where he graduated at the top of his class. In 1992, he attended the Platoon Commander’s Course at the Uganda School of Infantry, then located in Jinja, and in 1994, he attended the Uganda Junior Staff College, also in Jinja.

He continued his education in 1998 by attending the Mobile International Defence Management Course in Lusaka, Zambia, and the Company Command Course in Tanzania. In 2001, he attended the Combat Group Command Course at the Armored Corps Center and School in Ahmadnagar, India, performing exceptionally well. In 2004, he attended the Senior Command and Staff Course at the National Defence College, Kenya (NDCK), and also completed the Peace Support Operations Course (PSTC) at Karen, Kenya.

In 2005, he successfully completed a Diploma course in Strategic Studies at the University of Nairobi, and in 2007, he graduated with a master’s degree in Strategic Studies from the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, United States of America.

Military

Between 1987 and 1989, he worked as a Junior Non-commissioned Instructor at Kaweweta and Kabamba Recruit Training Schools. In 1991, he served as the Officer in charge of Career Planning. He later served as the Director of Supplies in 1997/8 and held the positions of Armoured Brigade Logistics Officer and Brigade Administrative Officer in 1999 and 2000, respectively.

In 2001, he became the Directing Staff at the Uganda Junior Staff College in Jinja before being appointed as the 503 Infantry Brigade Operations and Training officer in 2001/2002. He served as the Armoured Brigade Operations and Training Officer between 2002 and 2003 before commanding the Armoured Brigade in an acting capacity. He took full command of the 507 Brigade in 2005 before becoming the Principal Air Staff Officer (Personnel and Administration) at Uganda Peoples Defence Air Force HQs in 2006.

In 2007, he was appointed as the Aide-de-Camp (ADC) to the President of Uganda and served in that capacity until December 2012 when he was appointed as the Commander of the 4th Infantry Division of UPDF, based in Gulu. He was appointed as the Joint Chief of Staff of the UPDF in May 2013.

Responsibilities

In addition to being the Chief of Defense Forces, Lieutenant General Wilson Mbadi holds other important positions within the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF). He is the Inspector General of UPDF and also serves as the Chairman of several committees, including the UPDF Medals Committee, UPDF Dress Committee, Defence Forces Duty-Free Shop Board of Directors, Senior Command and Staff College Control Board, Uganda National Defence College Steering Committee, and MoDVA Projects Preparation Committee. He is also a member of the Kyoga Dynamics Board of Directors.

Previously, Lt. Gen. Mbadi served as the Chairman of Uganda Military Engineering College and as a member of the Board of Directors of the National Enterprise Corporation Limited from 2013 to 2016. He was also a member of the Standard Gauge Railway Board of Directors from 2015 to 2018.

Lt. Gen. Mbadi is married and has children. He is a practicing Christian.

LT GEN PETER ELWELU
DEPUTY CHIEF OF DEFENCE FORCES (D/CDF)
LT GEN PETER ELWELU

Peter Elwelu is a Lieutenant General in the Ugandan military, formally known as the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF). He currently holds the position of Deputy Chief of the Defense Forces of the UPDF, which he was appointed to on 24 June 2021. Prior to this, he served as the commander of land forces from 9 January 2017, which is the fourth-highest position in the UPDF hierarchy. From June 2013 until January 2017, he was the commander of the UPDF 2nd division, which is based in Mbarara, the largest town in Uganda’s Western Region.

Military

Peter Elwelu reportedly joined the Ugandan military in 1987 after attending the Tanzania Military Academy in Monduli. He was then posted to the military installation at Kabamba and later transferred to the Cadet Officer School at the Gaddafi military barracks in Jinja in 1995.

Elwelu served as a commander within the UPDF during the invasion of Zaire and the overthrow of Mobutu Sese Seko, alongside the Rwandan military. He was later deployed to the Northern Region in 1999 to fight Joseph Kony and his guerilla Lord’s Resistance Army. During this tour, he survived being shot in the back.

In 2007, Elwelu commanded the first Uganda military contingent when the country sent troops to Somalia under the African Union Mission to Somalia. He received commendation from the UPDF chief of defence forces, General Katumba Wamala, for his role on that tour.

In June 2013, Elwelu was appointed commander of the 2nd UPDF Division based at Mbarara, having previously served as the commander of the UPDF 3rd Division based at Moroto.

Elwelu made his first visit to UPDF troops in Somalia under AMISOM on Wednesday 22 March 2017 in his capacity as the UPDF Land forces commander. According to the spokesman of the Ugandan contingent in Somalia, the general’s visit was to “check on the operational tempo, boost the morale of the troops, and also update the troops on the situation in Uganda.”

In February 2019, over 2,000 men and women in the UPDF received promotions, including Elwelu, who was promoted from the rank of Major General to that of Lieutenant General.

MAJ GEN KAYANJA MUHANGA
COMMANDER LAND FORCE (CLF)
MAJ GEN KAYANJA MUHANGA

Kayanja Muhanga, who was born around 1964 in Fort Portal, Kabarole District, Western Uganda, is an army officer in Uganda. He currently holds the position of Commander of Land Forces in the UPDF, appointed in October 2022 by the President of Uganda and Commander in Chief of the UPDF, Yoweri Museveni. Previously, he served as the commander of the Uganda People’s Defence Force contingent in Eastern DRC under the operation code named Operation Shujja, a position he was appointed to in January 2021 by General Yoweri Museveni.

Maj. General Muhanga previously held the position of Commandant of the Military Police within the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF). He has a sister named Margaret Muhanga, who is a staffer in the Office of the President of Uganda, and an older brother, journalist Andrew Mwenda, who is the publisher and editor of The Independent (Uganda) newsmagazine. Their father is Mzee Phillip Muhanga of Fort Portal.

Military

In 1988, he attended the Cadet Officers Course at the Uganda Military Academy, which was then located at Quaddafi Barracks in Jinja, Eastern Uganda. Later, the school was relocated to Kabamba in Mubende District. He joined the NRA as a Private and served in that rank until the NRA took power in 1986. Initially, he served in the military police unit based in Kasese and later in the Presidential Protection Unit as a Private from 1986 to 1988.

After completing the Junior Cadet Officer Course, he served in the office of the Chief of Combat Operations as a Second Lieutenant. In 1990, he was transferred to the Directorate of Military Intelligence, where he served until 1993. Then, from 1993 to 1997, he served as the Intelligence Officer, attached to the UPDF barracks in Mubende.

Later, he was assigned to the Joint Anti-Terrorism Taskforce at the rank of Captain. He was promoted to Major, Lieutenant Colonel, and Colonel, respectively. In Somalia, he commanded Uganda’s “Battle Group Eight” and concurrently served as the Deputy Commander for the Ugandan contingent in Somalia.

After his duty in Somalia, he served as the Chief of Military Police in the UPDF until January 2014. In January 2014, he was appointed as the Commander of UPDF Operations in South Sudan with the rank of Colonel. A month later, he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier.

MAJ GEN CHARLES OKIDI
COMMANDER AIR FORCE (CAF)
MAJ GEN CHARLES OKIDI

Major General Charles Okidi is a high-ranking military officer in the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF), currently serving as the Chief of Staff of the UPDF Air Force, a position he assumed on December 11, 2019. Prior to this appointment, he served as the Director of Operations at the UPDF Air Force Headquarters in Entebbe.

Military

Okidi is a distinguished Ugandan military officer, serving as the Chief of Staff of the UPDF Air Force since 11 December 2019. In addition to his military duties, he is a long-term presidential pilot. He has held several leadership positions in the Air Force, including Air Force Wing Commander at Nakasongola Air Force Base, Commander of the Air Force Wing at Entebbe Air Force Base, and Squadron Commander and Officer Commanding Operations at Entebbe Air Force Wing.

Okidi took over as Chief of Staff of the UPDF Air Force from Major General Paul Lokech, who was reassigned to special duties in South Sudan. In recognition of his outstanding service, Okidi was promoted from Brigadier to Major General on 28 March 2020.

BRIG GEN DAVID MUGISHA
COMMANDER SPECIAL FORCE COMMAND (COMD SFC)
BRIG GEN DAVID MUGISHA

David Mugisha was promoted from the rank of Colonel to that of Brigadier. He was then appointed as the second commander of the third infantry division, which is headquartered in Moroto. He served in that role until he was recently appointed as the commander of the Special Forces Command (SFC). The SFC is responsible for providing security to the President of Uganda and his family.

LT GEN CHARLES OTEMA
GENERAL OFFICER COMMANDING RESERVE FORCE (GOC - RF)
LT GEN CHARLES OTEMA
MAJ GEN LEOPOLD KYANDA
JOINT CHIEF OF STAFF (JCOS)
MAJ GEN LEOPOLD KYANDA

Leopold Eric Kyanda, born on January 1, 1970, is a Major General in the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) and currently holds the position of Joint Chief of Staff, effective as of June 24, 2021. He succeeded Lieutenant General Joseph Musanyufu, who was redeployed to the civil service.

Previously, Kyanda served as the Chief of Staff of the Land Forces in the UPDF, where he replaced Major General Charles Angina. Angina was promoted to the position of Deputy Chief of Defence Forces of Uganda (DCDF).

Military

Leo Kyanda, born on January 1, 1970, reportedly served as an Aide de Camp and driver for General Ivan Koreta, who was a Brigadier at the time, in 1994, according to reports in the Ugandan press. He later joined the Presidential Guard Brigade (PGB), which is now a part of the Special Forces Group (SFG), and gradually ascended the ranks until he became the Commander of the PGB.

Subsequently, he became the Commandant of the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) and was then assigned to serve as the Military Attaché at the Ugandan Embassy in Washington, DC for a period of two years. Upon returning to Uganda, he was appointed as the Chief of Personnel and Administration in the UPDF and was later promoted to the rank of Brigadier, where he served as the Chief of Staff of Land Forces in Uganda.[5] In December 2017, Kyanda completed a military course at the National Defence College in India.

In February 2019, Kyanda was promoted from the rank of Brigadier to Major General as part of a promotions exercise that involved over 2,000 men and women in the UPDF.