How Can I Join UPDF, Prisons or Police Forces in Uganda?

Last Updated on December 11, 2020 by
Recruits under running exercise

Whether you are looking forward for updf cadet recruitment 2016 or Police force in Uganda for fame, to be employed or for prestige, reading this article will help you uncover those important things you need to note on how to get set. It will also answer the above question. UPDF is short word for Uganda peoples defense forces. It is the governments military body which is responsible for protecting the entire country including people, property, borders and etc from any kind of insecurity. The same happens to the Police force which is responsible for protecting citizens of Uganda and their properties. For the Prisons, it is responsible as the name says. Ensuring safe custody of prisoners and so forth.

In order to join the either of the above, there are many factors which one needs to take note of since failure to follow might make one unable to join. Just like it is in many other countries which were formally under the British colonial rule inclusive of Uganda, there are a set of procedures which are followed during the recruitment. And for you who is wondering on how you could join, continue reading to discover some of the important things you should note.

When does the UPDF, Prisons or Police Recruitment start date?

This is one common question many of those who are willing to Join the UPDF or police in Uganda ask. And yes, you have to ask if you are to find out the truth. If you have made up your mind and ready to join the forces, then below are some of the ways you will use to know when the recruitment exercise will occur.

Newspaper advert for force joining

Newspapers – For all the past years, both the Police and UPDF have been announcing through when the recruitment exercise will take place and where basing on the fact that different districts in Uganda have different recruitment days and locations. The Newvision for example is a government media channel where such days and dates will be published. Keeping track of the newspapers adverts will help you learn when. And this applies for this year 2016 since they haven’t announced.

Radio and TV programme – Yes, I have heard many radio channels run these recruitment adverts. Staying tuned on your favorite radio channel for example CBS FM will help you get instant news about when the recruitment is to happen and where.

Social media like Facebook – With social media being one of the mostly used channel, you are guaranteed of knowing when the UPDF and Police recruitment exercise will happen and occur. Such news groups and well informed people friends will help in this.

Requirements for Joining the UPDF or Police In Uganda

Requirements to join updf army checklist

Well Educated – Whether you are targeting the regular police or army for example, foot soldiers or non commissioned officers, the fact remains that you have to be educated. This is number one factor since days are gone for those who are uneducated to join such forces. Before you get set, you should ensure that all supporting original and photocopy documents are preset since they are required. For example, to join as a regular requires one to have completed senior four (UCE Ugandan standard), and for cadets, senior 6 (UACE Ugandan standard) is required.

Physically fit, Sound mind and healthy – This is mandatory, if you are preparing to join the army or police in Uganda. A check exercise is held for general body and a physically fit exercise is as well held. Candidates who don’t pass any of the above stand many chances of being left out.

Crime free citizen – Yes, the UPDF and Police dont entertain wrong doers. You should be a crime free citizen in order to join. That is why there is a need for one to be cleared from both the Local council 1 to 3, Giso (Gombolola internal security officer) and Police. A letter bearing all stamps is required and must be present at the time of recruitment.

Ugandan citizen – In order to qualify, you must be a Ugandan citizen. You should cross check your citizenship status to find out if you are eligible to join the forces.

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Preparing for the Recruitment day to join the Uganda UPDF or Police

Preparing to join police force Uganda

Now that you know what it is required and when you are supposed to go or the recruitment, its time to get prepared. As seen above, it is very important for one to be well set in advance other than waiting for the final day. This you can do by e with ensuring that all of the requirements are are you.

Self train – Yes, part of the major exercise which is undertaken to select those who will qualify is running, pres-sups and many others. You can get started with your own training for example, running on a daily basis, and doing those press ups. This will help you stay fit and possibly make it on the day. And besides, staying fit is part of life, so why not start now even before they announce.

Certify your Academic documents – A certified academic document weighs much higher than just a copy. If possible, make that attempt when the time is close and stay on the safe side. This will help you have papers which are unique, and which will increase on your chances of making it.

Make body check up – Yes, don’t wait to be tested at the recruitment day and only to find that you are sick. It is better to do the medical test now and discover your weakness. This will help you know where your weakness is and how to solve it. Remember, the earlier the better.

Stay well informed – In the advert, everything about the recruit is mentioned. When and where is also mentioned. How and where is too outlined. Like we seen above, it is important for you to use the different possible channels to learn all the info you need.

On the Recruitment day

Gen. Katuma Wamala UPDF Commander

This is the day you have been waiting for. It is very important for you to be more than ready since its the only way which will help you make it.

Wake up early – Wake up very early and arrive at the recruitment center (gazetted area) at an earlier time. Some travel at 4 am while others at 5 am. This will help you be stress free and free your mind as you get set for the exercise.

Take your original, certified and photocopy documents along – Yes, carry all of them since they will be required. You should only present them when they are asked. Please note that having a friend or relative who will take them back home after verification is important since all who qualify wont be allowed to go back home that same day.

Follow the right guide – Depending on what you are joining – either recruits or cadet, you should be screened from the right place otherwise, you might end up joining from the wrong side.

Be calm and wait for that time – You are advised to be calm and wait for that time when the exercise will commence. You don’t have to worry, if you were well set, you will pass.

Rising in the Ranks

Rising in army ranks

Once you have joined, its time to work hard and follow orders. This will determine how you will rise in the ranks as deemed fit by your superiors or commander. You can start as a recruit (foot soldier or policeman) and rise in the ranks to General after some time. Who knows? For those who want to start in ranks straight away, then joining as a cadet office is the only way since you ate passed out as a commissioned officer. In my next article, I will share with you the list of Ugandan army Generals. This article has been compiled from the different available facts on sites like,, prisons and etc.

How Can I Join UPDF, Prisons or Police Forces in Uganda?

4 thoughts on “How Can I Join UPDF, Prisons or Police Forces in Uganda?

  1. yeah…thanks for the amazing information..I also opt to join updf after my university in third year offering a bachelors in accounting and finance here at kyambogo university.

  2. thanks for good information l have learnt many things from your message even me l wish to join but am still at university second year student doing economics and statistics

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