Court martial cases suspended after officers’ term expires

Kampala- The trials of cases before the General Court Martial (GCM) at Makindye have been suspended until appointment of a new team.The suspension follows the expiry of the one-year tenure of the court members led by Brig Moses Ddiba Ssentongo.

President Museveni appointed Brig Ssentongo as chairman of the GCM on June 6, 2013, replacing Brig Fred Tolit.

Brig Ssentongo, a long-serving political commissar in the army, formerly served as Chief Political Commissar and Chief of Education and Sports before leading the court.

When contacted, the legal aiser of the court martial, Maj Raphael Mugisha, confirmed the development, but said the suspension of court operations is in line with the laws governing the UPDF.

“We are waiting for convening orders issued by the High Command,” he said.Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, the army spokesperson, could not comment on the matter, saying he needed time to consult.

But Brig Ssentongo confirmed the expiry of the instrument, saying they were waiting for the appointing authority to pronounce itself on the matter.

“There is a lot of work but we could not continue working after the expiry of the instrument on June 6 this year,” he said in an interview.

The GCM is established under the 2005 UPDF Act to consist of the chairman, two senior officers, two junior officers, a political commissar and a non-commissioned officer.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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