Uganda’s controversial constitutional amendment bill (removal of the Presidential age limit) from candidates from the Constitution has been tabled for the First Reading.
The Constitutional Amendment No. 2 Bill, 2017 was tabled by Igara West Member of Parliament Raphael Magyezi.
It is during the first reading that the Speaker of Parliament refers the bill to a relevant sessional committee – in this case, the Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs at the moment chairman Oboth Oboth.
It is the committee that then invites the relevant minister to introduce the bill.
This very bill caused chaotic scenes in the Ugandan Parliament between the Opposition, independent and National Resistance Movement lawmakers leading to physical fighting.
Shortly before this happened,, 25 Opposition members had been suspended for three consecutive plenary sessions by the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga and were asked to leave immediately.
They refused and Members of Securitry were called in to eject them, something that resulted into serious exchange of blows and throwing of chairs, microphone poles to each other.
All members of the Opposition have joined their suspended colleagues to go on leave meaning the house is occupied by NRM Mps and a few of the independents.( The Opposition side was occupied by NRM MPs)
Mr Magyezi said he secured a Certificate of Financial Implication – from the Ministry of Finance which indicates the funds that are required to institute the proposals in a bill are available.
The Speaker of Parliament, Ms Rebecca Kadaga referred the Bill to the House Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs where it would be scrutinised further.
It also seeks to provide 15 days, up from 10, after the declaration of presidential election results, within which the results can be challenged.
The House granted him the leave.The committee also interfaces with other stakeholders to gather their views on the subject matter.
Ms Kadaga, the Speaker of Parliament, said on Tuesday, during plenary that was boycotted by MPs opposed to the lifting of age limit that since the constitutional amendment bill is important, ‘the people (ordinary Ugandans) must be involved in the deliberations’.
By Ronald Kabuubi/Kmaupdates