TPDF says farewell to Chief of Staff, 15 other generals

05Mar 2016
Aisia Rweyemamu
The Guardian
TPDF says farewell to Chief of Staff, 15 other generals

ABOUT 16 high-ranking officers of the Tanzania People’s Defence Forces (TPDF) retired yesterday in a colourful ceremony held at Twalipo Administrative Unit (TAU), on the outskirts of Dar es Salaam.

Tanzania People’s Defence Forces Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Samuel Ndomba (l) and Defence Commander of the UN Forces, Lt-Gen Paul Meela being ceremoniously pushed after their retirement from the army at Twalipo Military base in Dar es Salaam, yesterday. (Photo: Mpoki Bukuku).

The ceremony was attended by Chief of Defence Forces, Gen Davis Mwamunyange and other top level commanders.

This marks the first time that so many high-ranking army commanders have retired at the same time, including major-generals, brigadier-generals and lieutenant-generals.

Speaking on the sidelines after the ceremony, retired Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Samuel Ndomba asked the army to continue being faithful, protecting the country and its people as well as observing its ethical maxims.

“I am proud that I am retiring today and leaving a strong army with confidence, dignity, which is trusted in and out of the country. Therefore, I want the army to maintain this status,” Lt.-Gen. Ndomba declared.

Lt.-General Paul Mella, who retired from the post of Force Commander for the United Nations in Darfur, said that the sense of service and integrity that he learned from Tanzania’s participation in the UN peacekeeping force has enabled him to actively complete his duty in Darfur and help to bring honour to the country.

Lt.-Gen. Mella said being in Darfur for two and half years was not easy. There were lots of challenges and it was work which needs deep personal commitment, “but thank God, prayers made me strong and completed my tour of duty very well.”

He said while in Darfur he learned a lot, noting how important professionalism was in discharging his duties.

“Tanzanian forces have shown great potential such that many countries have learned from us. This is a big plus for our country so let’s maintain this,” he urged.

Lt.-Gen. Mella expressed his disappointment that despite wishing to protect the whole community in Darfur due to limited outlays they could not do so, as the army units failed to be everywhere.

Brig.-Gen. Emmanuel Maganga, who retired as chief of the Defence Inspection Unit said that he served in the army for 37 years and in all these years he has never been disappointed. Rather, he has a lot to be proud of from TPDF.

Brig.- Gen. Maganga stated: “I can’t forget my participation in peace keeping in Liberia. I saw a number of my fellow Africans suffering a lot. I will never forget this in my life.”

The farewell event was led by a parade which Lt.-Gen. Ndomba inspected after arriving at the ceremony ground at around 11:15am, proceeding to inspecting the special parade mounted for him by four units, namely the Infantry guard, National Service guard, Navy guard and Air Force guard.

The four guards units passed before Lt.-Gen. Ndomba in his honor. Lt.- Gen. Mella also inspected the parade on behalf of other retiring generals apart from the Chief of Staff.

The guard units formed an omega sign on the ground which means that end of service at the military.

The retired generals were moving out of the ground using special military vehicles up to TAU offices where ex-Chief of Staff Lt-Gen Ndomba was handed some staff documents.

The retired generals were awarded new vehicles of Toyota Prado make.The retiring generals were Brig. Gen. Harold Mziray, who was commander of the Infantry School in Arusha and Brig.-Gen. Martin Mwankanye, the Director of Defence Foreign Relations

Others were Brig.-Gen. John Mwita Chacha, Commander of Tembo Brigade, Brig.-Gen. Ezra Ndimugwango, commander of the Air Transport Station, Brig.-Gen. Mimmy Abdallah, coordinator of army development projects; Brig.-Gen. Agustino Gailanga, Chief of the Reserve Force; Brig.-Gen. Dr Luhindi Msangi, head of the TPDF Medical School.

Others are Major-General Raphael Muhuga, Chief of National Service; Major-General Charles Muzanira, head of Mzingo Corporation in Morogoro; Major-General Ezekiel Kyunga, head of the command and discipline school in Duluti, Arusha; Major-General Joseph Kapwani, head of the Air Force; Major-General Vicent Mritaba, director of personnel in the army, along with Major-General Salum Mustafa Kijuu, commander of the Infantry.