Speaker on the spot over age limit Bill

LONG REIGN: Uganda’s rul­ing NRM sets in mo­tion bid to al­low Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni to seek an­other term in o∞ce in 2021

The East African - - FRONT PAGE - By GAAKI KIGAMBO Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

As the de­bate over the scrap­ping of age lim­its on the pres­i­dency of­fi­cially gets un­der­way, the spot­light will now turn to the Speaker of Par­lia­ment Re­becca Kadaga. She is an ar­biter be­tween those op­posed to age caps and pro­po­nents of the limit.

Those against re­moval of the age cap say they are de­fend­ing the sanc­tity of the Con­sti­tu­tion, while pro­po­nents say the lim­i­ta­tions are dis­crim­i­na­tory and re­strict the elec­torate’s free will to choose whomever they want to lead them. On Septem­ber 12, over 100 leg­is­la­tors from the rul­ing NRM party met in par­lia­ment for a “con­sul­ta­tive meet­ing,” where they took the first for­mal step to­wards re­mov­ing the age limit by pre­sent­ing a pri­vate mem­ber’s Bill. This mat­ter had un­til now been shrouded in pre­var­i­ca­tion.

While the tabling of the Bill had ini­tially been slated for Thurs­day, Septem­ber 14, it was post­poned to Thurs­day, Septem­ber 21.

On Septem­ber 12, over 100 leg­is­la­tors from the rul­ing NRM party met in par­lia­ment for a “con­sul­ta­tive meet­ing,” where they took the first for­mal step to­wards re­mov­ing the age limit by pre­sent­ing a pri­vate mem­ber’s Bill. This mat­ter had un­til now been shrouded in pre­var­i­ca­tion.

While the tabling of the Bill had ini­tially been slated for Thurs­day, Septem­ber 14, it was post­poned to Thurs­day, Septem­ber 21, be­cause of Ms Kadaga’s ab­sence, whom the NRM MPS pre­fer to han­dle the Bill.

At the height of the dis­cus­sion last year, Ms Kadaga’s deputy Ja­cob Ou­lanyah ac­cused her of al­ways duck­ing when­ever a con­tro­ver­sial is­sue came up. Al­though Speaker Kadaga has pro­jected Par­lia­ment as in­de­pen­dent from an over­bear­ing ex­ec­u­tive, she has buck­led un­der pres­sure on is­sues Pres­i­dent Yow­eri Mu­sev­eni has shown di­rect in­ter­est in.

Pic­ture: File

Pres­i­dent Yow­eri Mu­sev­eni.

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