Thursday April 24 2014

Sudan still supporting Kony, says Mbabazi

By Isaac Imaka

Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi has said Uganda will only normalise relationships with Sudan if the Khartoum government stops supporting the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels.

Speaking to Parliament on Wednesday during the Prime Minister’s question time, Mr Mbabazi said Uganda has evidence that Sudan was sponsoring the LRA rebels and that he made it clear to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) during a meeting in which he represented President Museveni.

“Sudan accused us of supporting rebellion in their country, which I denied. But the OIC has taken note of our complaints and it has expressed willingness to mediate,” he said.

Mr Mbabazi’s statements were in response to a question by Mbale Municipality representative Wamai Wamanga (FDC) as to whether the recent fighting in South Sudan between president Salva Kiir’s forces and rebels led by Riek Machar, is responsible for Khartoum’s alleged recall of its envoy to Uganda.

“It is common knowledge that we have been having issues with Sudan. We had hoped that we had put all this behind us, but sadly, Sudan has not stopped supporting Joseph Kony and the LRA,” Mr Mbabazi said.

It is close to six years since LRA rebels were flushed out of northern Uganda. Since then, the rebels have been on the loose, especially in DR Congo and are now believed to be settled in the Central African Republic.

There have been counter-accusations by both Khartoum and Kampala, each accusing the other of supporting rebels in each other’s countries.
When contacted yesterday, officials from the Sudanese embassy in Kampala said they could respond as the ambassador was out of the country and his deputy was in a meeting.