Desabre arrived in Kampala just hours after leading Ismaili to a 5-0 win over El Raja in his final match in charge of the Egyptian club on Wednesday.
His first task will be to prepare a team of locally-based players for next month’s African Nations Championship (CHAN) in Morocco.
“I’m happy to be in Uganda to coach the Cranes and I’m ready for the challenge to make millions of Ugandans happy,” he said at his unveiling.
“I’ve worked for a long time in Africa and I know a lot about African football. I am ready to serve the Cranes.”
The Federation of Uganda Football Associations (Fufa) added that Desabre will work closely with all of Uganda’s development teams.
While Desabre has never coached a national team he does have a lot of club experience, mainly in north Africa with spells in Tunisia, Egypt, Algeria and Morocco.
His north African stints have seen him take charge of the likes of Esperance in Tunisia and Wydad Casablanca in Morocco.
The 41-year-old was one of the four men named on a shortlist by Fufa on 22 December.
The coaches to miss out are current interim coach Moses Basena, Northern Irishman Johnny McKinstry and Belgian Emilio Ferrera.
A five-man technical committee led by Zambia’s Kalusha Bwalya was responsible for formulating the shortlist.
The Cranes have been without a fulltime coach since Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic terminated his contract over the issue of unpaid wages in July.
Sredojevic led Uganda to the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations finals in Gabon, the first time the Cranes had reached the finals since 1978.