By Henry Sekanjako
The Government has pleaded for peace between the Khartoum and South Sudan authorities, saying the two governments need to solve their differences amicably.
There have been simmering tensions between the two over the oil-rich border state of Heglig, with South Sudan accusing Khartoum of attacking the region with fighter jets and ground forces days after troops from the South began withdrawing from the town to avoid full-blown war.
Appearing before the parliamentary committee on defence on Thursday, defence minister Crispus Kiyonga said the two countries needed to sit and sort out their issues without going to war.
Kiyonga said they would work as the African Union to ensure that peace prevails in the two countries.
He, however, rubbished media reports that Uganda would independently intervene if the fighting between South Sudan and Khartoum escalated.
Recently, the media quoted the chief of defence forces, Gen. Aronda Nyakayirima, as saying that Uganda would be forced to intervene in the fight between the two countries in case the war intensified.
“This is not true. I trust Gen. Aronda, he cannot say this. All we are saying is that there should be peace,” Kiyonga told the MPs.
Kiyonga, who was in the company of the commander of land forces, Lt. Gen. Katumba Wamala and other ministry officials, was appearing before the committee to seek approval of over sh688b needed by the ministry for the 2012/2013 financial year.
He said there was need for the Government to allocate the ministry enough money, adding that there were several issues such as the hunt for Kony in the Central African Republic (CAR) that needed to be well funded.
“There is no budget for us to sustain our troops in CAR. They are at a higher risk compared to those in Somalia,” Kiyonga said.