Museveni appoints Special Envoy to South Sudan, Ethiopia

Museveni appoints Special Envoy to South Sudan, Ethiopia
Museveni and Mbabazi (photo credit: The Ugandan Wire)

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has appointed former Prime Minister Amama Mabazi as a Special Envoy to South Sudan and Ethiopia.

The development comes days after South Sudan and Uganda implemented waiver of visa restrictions to nationals from both countries holding valid passports.

Sources cited by Daily Monitor said in September, Mr. Museveni directed his Principal Private Secretary, Dr. Kenneth Omona, to work with the President’s Office and Public Service Commission (PSC) to formalize the appointment of Mr. Mbabazi. 
The paper reports that on September 29, Dr. Omona wrote on behalf of the President, instructing the permanent secretary in the Office of the President, Hajj Yunus Kakande, to handle the matter with PSC, which is supposed to issue Mr. Mbabazi’s instruments. 

In the same letter, the publication says, Hajj Kakande was instructed to liaise with PSC to finalize the appointment and work out the nitty-gritties, including ensuring that Mr. Mbabazi gets a monthly salary that is “personal to the holder”. 
 A senior official at PSC yesterday explained that the reference to personal-to-holder proviso meant that Mr. Mbabazi’s pay would be determined on his experience, qualifications, and all characteristics that are taken into account when a person is being evaluated for a promotion

When contacted for comments on Mbabazi’s mission to Juba and Addis Ababa, senior presidential press secretary Lindah Nabusayi told the publication that: “Can’t confirm or deny. In case of anything, we shall let you know.”

Accepts appointment

Despite ignoring phone calls and messages sources privy to the appointment revealed that for personal reasons, he preferred to keep the appointment “hush-hush” but accepted the assignment. 

His appointment to Juba has been attributed to the mutual and longstanding ties between Uganda and South Sudan. But it is also the long-standing security interests, influx of refugees from South Sudan, insecurity, threats to future market integration, and bilateral trade that constitute President Museveni’s concern.