Uganda buys fighter jets
Written by defenceWeb, Tuesday, 24 May 2011
On April 7 the Wall Street Journal reported that Uganda bought between six and eight fighters and other military equipment from Russia, worth US$744 million.
Uganda is preparing to begin oil production in the Lake Albert region and is buying the military hardware to safeguard oil activities along the border with Congo, according to Ugandan People’s Defence Force (UPDF) spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Felix Kulayigye.
“Acquiring a high air force capacity is in line with that defence policy of protecting territorial integrity and wealth. However, I need to add that this is not a threat to our neighbours. Our policy is defensive and not offensive or aggressive,” he said.
Last December Uganda’s ministry of defence paid US$446m (sh1 trillion) as a first part payment to an ‘unidentified supplier’ for the aircraft as well as tanks, AllAfrica reports. It adds that the equipment is believed to be coming from Russia.
According to The East African, the money came from the supplementary budget and was withdrawn from the central bank without parliamentary approval. "Although the money was not allocated in the 2010/11 financial year, parliament will approve it in the form of a supplementary budget and this is normal,” said Kabakumba Matsiko, Uganda’s information minister. Permission was later granted by parliament, according to The East African.
Matsiko said that the equipment would enable the country to deal with any ‘eventuality’ arising from threats to Uganda’s security. “Every country needs to be well equipped to defend its strategic interests,” she said. Uganda is concerned about instability from neighbouring South Sudan’s secession from Khartoum and instability along the Congolese border.
Uganda has previously accused Sudan and Congo of arming its foes, including the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and Jamil Mukulu’s Allied Democratic Forces (ADF). Uganda itself keeps numerous troops in Central African Republic (CAR) and northeastern Congo to hunt for Lord's Resistance Army rebels who waged a long-running insurgency against Kampala and are now roaming the jungles there.
The UK’s Tullow Oil Plc, France’s Total SA and China’s Cnooc Ltd will spend US$10b project to develop Uganda’s oil fields this year. Uganda discovered oil in commercial quantities in 2006 in the Albertine Rift Basin on its border with Congo. The two countries share the basin. Tension flared in 2007 when armed Congolese killed a geologist contracted by Heritage Oil after accusing the company of prospecting in their territorial waters.
"The executive arm of government which is mandated with the security matters of this country took a decision to buy these jets because we need them," Matsiko told Reuters last month. She declined to give more details of the "highly sensitive and classified matter," or to say how many jets were ordered.
"A government that stealthily withdraws money from the consolidated fund (treasury) and spends it on war machines while its hospitals lack essential drugs -- how can one describe that government? Insanity," said shadow finance minister Oduman Okello.
In April last year, Russian media reported that Uganda had agreed to buy six Su-30 fighters while Algeria had agreed to buy another 16 for a combined price of US$1.2 billion. Uganda supposedly agreed to pay for the aircraft with oil. However, Kulayigye last year dismissed the reports as false.
“We had negotiations with the Russians over the jet fighters but upon realising that the cost was too high, we decided otherwise,” he said. “We never entered into an agreement with them.” Instead, Kulayigye said that Uganda had sent its six MiG-21 for overhaul in Russia. This time government ministers are adamant the deal is going ahead.
- Uganda says checking whether Islamist rebel leader arrested in Tanzania
- Ugandan police arrest six suspects in prosecutor's murder
- Angolan Su-30K deliveries to start this year
- Senior Ugandan public prosecutor shot and killed in Kampala suburb
- Uganda ups security, says al Shabaab group behind U.S. warning
- U.S. warns of possible attacks in Ugandan capital
- US donates two Cessna 208B Caravans to Uganda
- Uganda tours Pakistani armaments factory as army seeks $170 million for weapons
- Uganda denies massing troops along Sudan border
- African Partnership Flight-Djibouti kicks off
Airbus Defence and Space launches satellite data management solution for machine-to-machine networks
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 5 May 2015
The satellite data management solution for machine-to-machine networks provides visibility and control of satellite data in a single multi-device solution.
Upgraded PS-05/A radar gives Gripen C/D extended performance, operating range
by Saab, 29 April 2015
The PS-05/A Mk4's hardware configuration with a new radar back-end gives improved radar performance and operational range, says Saab.
Saab signs contract with Brazil on weapon acquisition for Gripen NG
by Saab, 28 April 2015
The total order value for the Gripen NG weapon acquisition by the Brazilian Ministry of Defence is approximately $245 million.
Nautic Africa acquires Anchor Boat Shop
by Nautic Africa, 24 April 2015
Established nearly 80 years ago, the boat producer holds the exclusive rights for Yamaha engine sales in Africa.
Saab receives order on Ceros 200 from Danish Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organization
by Saab, 17 April 2015
The Danish Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organization will buy the tracking system for approximately SEK 145 million.
More than just IFE - Thales expands its offer into InFlyt Experience
by Thales, 17 April 2015
Thales will reshape its in-flight entertainment and connectivity activities into Thales InFlyt Experience.