By Bikeke Saimon
A joint follow-up mechanism on the Allied Democratic Force (ADF) has today been officially launched in the western district of Kasese.
The formation of the joint follow-up mechanism was among the key resolutions that were agreed upon by heads of State during the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region that took place in June last year.
“Having realized the acts of terrorism by the ADF the heads of State from the Great Lakes Region found it pertinent that the region comes up with a mechanism to counter the insecurity threats” Col Henry Lusoke the deputy chief of military intelligence said during the launch in Kasese today.
Lusoke disclosed that the major purpose of the follow up mechanism will be to gather intelligence about ADF activities, fuse it and share it with member states for any other possible action.
Lt Gen Wilson Mbadi the deputy Chief of Defense Forces said that the launch of the joint follow up mechanism is a testimony that regional heads of State are determined to see an end of ADF activities and other negative forces.
He explained that the threats and illegal activities of the ADF in eastern DR Congo have become a great concern for the entire region.
Ambassador MuburiMuita the executive secretary for the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region called for the immediate operationalization of the joint follow up mechanism.
Muita also cautioned member States against only focusing on ADF and losing sight of other negative forces like the LRA, M23, among others that pose a security threat.
The Defense and veteran affairs minister Rtd Lt Col Bright Rwamirama who represented the central government during the launch stated that the launch of a joint follow up mechanism is timely since the ADF has already spread its influence across the Great Lakes Region.
Countries that include Kenya, Tanzania, DR Congo and Uganda are each expected to send at least two security experts who will be seating at the joint follow-up mechanism office in Kasese.
Meanwhile, Uganda will offer the first leadership which will be shared annually.