KIGALI - Members of Parliament were yesterday engaged in a heated debate of whether the proposed Military University should be established by a Presidential Decree or by the law governing higher institutions of learning.
The debate came up during the review of an amendment to the law establishing the Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF).
Reading out some of the amendments made on the bill, the vice president of the Parliamentary Committee on Security and State Sovereignty, Emmanuel Gatera, said that the establishment of the university will be determined by a Presidential Decree.
Hon. Vénéranda Nyirahirwa was the first to take the floor on the issue, and questioned if a presidential decree would not be contrary to other laws.
Agnes Mukazibera suggested, “Let’s keep in line with the law. It is not right for the university to be set up by a presidential decree, we are aware that there is a law governing the establishment of higher institutes of learning”.
“There is totally no misunderstanding on this particular issue, the whole concept of a military university is something very important that we should embrace. But we should keep within the confines of the law,” said Juliana Kantengwa.
“If the court martial is not set up by a presidential decree, why should we have a presidential decree for this university?” she wondered. The Parliament agreed that the Minister of Defence will have to introduce another bill concerning the Military University.
The Minister of Defence, Gen. James Kabarebe, who was in parliament to defend the bill, explained to the lawmakers the concept of the university, pointing out that its main objective will be offering studies on security strategy.
He added that the establishment of the university would help in spreading the military doctrine thoroughly, throughout the force.