Social media has been hit with a lot of mixed reactions and excitement following President Museveni’s move to unveil Uganda’s first prototype army truck designed for all terrain firefighting situations and pest control with minimum human interface.
Museveni noted that once this was done, Uganda would be able to make more of these firefighting and pest control machines.
The tanker manufactured by the production arm of the National Enterprises Corporation under the ‘All Terrain Fighting Project’ in Nakasongola district was thought out by the president who tasked the engineering section to develop a concept that combines army trucks with fire and pest control mechanism on all terrains.
Speaking at the launch, Museveni noted that the people in the west are faced with many wild fires but had not mastered the fire-fighting concept very well.
He said in Africa, firefighting was done traditionally but is now being modernized noting that he decided to combine firefighting with military trucks that can move on any terrain.
“We used to have rudimentary methods of fighting fire like using tree branches…but now we have combined military knowledge in building this to help with fires and now pest control. I also want to introduce this to the Americans because they have huge fires,” he said.
America, Europe and Australia have experienced some of the worst fire epidemics.
In attendance was the Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Uganda Christopher Krafft, the Managing Director NEC Lt. Gen. James Mugira and a team of Ugandan engineers among other top officials.
The Deputy General Manager and Chief Engineer in charge of the project at the army facility in Nakasongola Eng. Gerald Lumu said the president tasked them to design a truck that can fight fires and can access all terrains as opposed to people moving on feet.
He said the truck can also be used for pest control and large scale spraying.
“This machine was a mastermind of the Commander-In-Chief, having thought about how to modify the traditional way of putting off fire, where people would use tree branches. Also given the high mobility of the locusts, the President tasked us to see how this fire fighting machine can be used for government to be able to effectively and efficiently defeat fires and locusts and other emergencies,” he said.
The President congratulated the NEC members for the product and also noted that despite the fact that the machine was still heavy, it could still be modified to be lighter and help in the fight against locusts and other pests.