By Mary Karugaba
President Yoweri Museveni is due to brief Parliament on the recent deployment of UPDF in South Sudan. During the meeting, the President is expected to make a formal request to Parliament at a special sitting of Parliament.
According to Article 210 of the Constitution, Parliament authorizes the deployment of UPDF outside the country.
However Section 39 of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces Act, 2005 allows the President to deploy troops outside Uganda for purposes of peace keeping or peace enforcement and later seeks authority from Parliament in case of an emergency.
Uganda deployed its forces at the height of intense fighting that erupted in the South Sudan capital, Juba, in mid-December following a political power struggle between President Salva Kiir and his ex-deputy Riek Machar.
According to Government, the deployment in Juba was to help evacuate Ugandan nationals trapped in the conflict.
Several legislators especially from the opposition have been critical of the South Sudan deployment saying it was never approved by Parliament as provided for in the constitution. Several legislators have been pushing for the recall of Parliament saying that the Country’s army was illegally deployed and that government owes an explanation to the country for the deployment.
Under the UPDF act, the President is allowed to deploy soldiers outside the country in an emergency and seek authority from Parliament later.
President Museveni to brief MPs on Sudan deployment