The Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, has pledged support to the Muslim Community amidst arrests and accusations of involvement of its members in the murder of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi.
Kadaga said that all Muslims could not have been involved in the murder of Kaweesi, Kaweesi, his bodyguard Kenneth Erau and the driver Godfrey Wamewo in March this year; as well as several Muslim clerics in the country.
“I can understand the unease of the Muslim Community as they have been in the spotlight as a result of these incidents. The Parliament of Uganda has been unequivocal in condemning these criminal and heinous activities,” said Kadaga, speaking at the 5th Iftar Dinner held for the Muslims during the fasting month of Ramadhan. The Dinner was held at Parliament Building, on Friday 16th June 2017.
A number of suspects, mostly of the Muslim faith have been arrested, detained and charged and remanded in Luzira Prisons.
“Justice should be done; we do not believe that all Muslims are killers. We must continue to maintain trust and confidence in our agencies to bring these crimes to an end,” she said adding that “These are extremist groups with geopolitical objectives and have nothing to do with Muslims here who share the national aspirations.”
The Speaker advised Muslims to remain firm and stay strong considering that murder of Muslim clerics targeted the Community due to its strength. She advised Muslims to overcome their differences and work together and choose dialogue over division to achieve a peaceful democracy.
“We embrace the spirit of peace, unity, giving and prayer at this Iftar Dinner, as we also reflect on those who struggle amidst war in many parts of the world, and for food and shelter, here in Uganda and around the globe,” Kadaga said adding that, “For us leaders, the pictures of hungry souls in some parts of the country should act as a constant reminder that we need to do more.”
On the issue of Islamic Banking, which is consistent with Islamic teachings, and provided for in the Financial Institutions Act, the Speaker wondered why it was taking long for the Ministry of Finance to come up with regulations on the practice.
Kadaga appealed to the assembled Muslims to give women an opportunity to work, earn, and spend the income without questioning from their husbands.
Dr. A. Kaliisa thanked Parliament for having approved Islamic Banking but said a lot still needed to be done to achieve its full operationalization, including attracting investors in the sector.
On the issue of marriage, Dr. Kaliisa advised that Uganda needed to adopt the Islamic Marriage law which, among other attributes, provides for polygamy in order to solve problems in the family.