President Museveni has described the deceased former UPDF Chief of Reserve Forces, Maj Gen Eric Mukasa, as a dedicated officer who served with “commendable discipline and professionalism” until his death.
Gen Mukasa succumbed to cancer at Nakasero Hospital in Kampala last Thursday. He was laid to rest at his ancestral home in Buwaya, Wakiso District, on Sunday.
In his condolence message read at the funeral by the minister of Works, Gen Katumba Wamala, Mr Museveni said: “the death of Maj Gen Eric Mukasa is a profound loss not only to his family, friends and community but to the UPDF fraternity and the entire nation.
“The late Mukasa served diligently with commendable discipline and professionalism. He was dedicated to peace building and social economic development. He was a man who knew the development priorities of his people. The nation shall remain indebted to his dedicated service,” the President added.
Maj Gen Mukasa was sent to Libya for training by Uganda Freedom Movement (UFM) rebels in 1981 and returned in 1982. Later, he joined the National Resistance Army rebels of Yoweri Museveni in the jungles of Luweero.
Mr Museveni said Gen Mukasa, who crossed with a number of fighters and arms from UFM that was led by Andrew Kayiira, was immediately absorbed in the NRA.
“My relationship with him dates as far back as our bush days. In 1983 when the enemies surrounded us, Mukasa was commanding a unit in Nsanje, Lukoola. He will be remembered for his long and dedicated service to the nation in various capacities. Mukasa’s legacy will always live on,” the President stated.
On his part, Gen Wamala, a former Chief of Defence Forces, said he was privileged to have worked with the late Gen Mukasa, especially during operations against the Lord’s Resistance Army insurgency in northern Uganda.
“I worked with Eric in Gulu when he was in-charge of logistics. You didn’t have to ask him to undertake a task and whenever you did, you didn’t need to follow up. He was a hard-working man and always delivered on time,” he said.
Gen Wamala hailed the deceased for keeping instrumental friends, which he said was a true depiction of honesty.
“I want to thank Col Fred Bogere. We have many friends but Bogere’s friendship was a unique one. But this trust has been consolidated by a honest character in Eric,” said Gen Wamala.
He further said “Gen Mukasa has left behind a great legacy besides educating his children. He was a selfless man, a giving man.”
Col Fred Bogere a friend of Gen Mukasa, hailed the UPDF for standing with the deceased.
“Eric is not dead because he missed anything at least as a medical necessity, but because the Lord has taken a decision,” he said, adding that “as Fred Bogere, I have lost a soul mate, I have lost my hand; I need your support.”
Gen David Muhoozi, the Chief of Defence Forces, said: “He (Mukasa) was a giant and very efficient. He was a loyal officer. He touched many lives, he helped many people, including his friends and colleagues, and that is why we are here,” said Muhoozi.
Describing him as a Muzanganda (peace builder,) Gen Muhoozi said Gen Mukasa gave UPDF a true image of humility and a disciplined force.
About Gen Mukasa
Maj Gen Mukasa was born on December 20, 1956 in Butambala District. He went to Nsozibbirye Primary School and Kampala Senior Secondary School for his O-level. He later joined Uganda Freedom Movement a rebel group commanded by the late Andrew Kayiira in 1981. Mukasa in 182 deserted to the National Resistance Army with a number of arms and fighters. In 1985, he was appointed a Logistical Officer in charge of the Mobile Brigade. In 2012, Mukasa was made a full colonel. In 2016, he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier and appointed Chief of Staff Reserve Forces. In 2019, he was promoted to Major General.