17 September 2017

Uganda: Where Your MP Stands On Age Limit Debate

Photo: The Observer
Ministers Arinaitwe Rwakajara, Adolf Mwesigye and Evelyn Anite address the media after the ruling party meeting last week

Kampala — As the debate on lifting the presidential age nears fever pitch, Sunday Monitor sounded out different MPs on how they would vote if the matter was put to the vote in the House.

Following the declaration by a number of NRM MPs on Tuesday that they will table a private member's Bill to delete Article 102 (b) from the Constitution and do away with the age limitation to the presidency, different groups came up to support or oppose the proposal.

MPs, who in the last Parliament were dubbed 'rebel MPs', told the press a day later that they would even physically fight on the floor of Parliament to block the move.

The MPs include Theodore Ssekikubo (NRM, Lwemiyaga), Monicah Amoding (NRM, Kumi), John Baptist Nambeshe (NRM, Manjiya), Felix Okot-Ogong (NRM, Dokolo) and Wilfred Nuwagaba (Ndorwa West, IND).

The others are Muhammad Nsereko (Kampala Central, Ind), Patrick Nsamba (NRM, Kassanda North, Barnabas Tinkasiimire (NRM, Buyaga West) and Odonga Otto (FDC, Aruu).

LoP speaks out

The Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, Ms Winnie Kiiza, who had travelled to Germany with FDC president Mugisha Muntu, posted on Facebook that the age limit was "the only safety valve that is and was remaining" to prevent President Museveni from ruling for life.

"We call upon Ugandans to resist that motion as it may plunge the country into a situation that may not be good for all of us, whether in government or Opposition."

The FDC MPs we spoke to all say they will vote to maintain the age limit, although the promoters of the Bill claim they have agreed with an unnamed FDC MP to second a motion they intend to table to seek leave of Parliament to bring a Bill aiming to scrap the age limit from the Constitution.

Kalungu West MP Joseph Ssewungu, also the Democratic Party chief whip in Parliament, told Sunday Monitor: "I am against it and I have met every DP MP and they are all against the removal of [the presidential] age limit."

The situation is not as straightforward regarding the Uganda People's Congress, especially since one of its MPs, Ms Betty Amongi, is the Minister of Lands.

Cabinet on Friday resolved to back the bid to remove the age limit from the constitution, and it remains to be seen whether Ms Amongi will contract the position. The ministers sampled for this article, including Sports State minister Charles Bakkabulindi, said they are bound by collective responsibility on this matter.

The UPC chief whip in Parliament, Mr Santa Alum, said: "As a person, I do not support the removal of age limits but we have not sat down as a party to come up with an official party position."

The army will be another interesting constituency to watch. Three members of its 10-man representation in Parliament referred Sunday Monitor to the Force's spokesperson for a comment on this matter.

Brig Gen Richard Karemire, the army spokesperson, said: "Article 208 that creates the UPDF clearly states that we are a non-partisan Force."

Below are some of the MPs and how they intend to vote. Most say they will vote to lift the age limit, with those who are undecided and those who will vote to maintain the age limit clause balancing out.

FOR REMOVAL OF TERM LIMIT

Name Constituency

Aboud Kitatta Bukoto West

Adolf Mwesige Bunyangabu

Angella Fre Moroto Municipality

Angura Fredrick Tororo South

Aogon Silus Kumi Municipality

Arinaitwe Rwakajara Workers

Arinda Gordon Bushenyi-Ishaka

Asiku Elly Elias Koboko North

Kawooya Anifa Sembabule Woman

Bichetero Veronica Kaberamaido Woman

Galabuzi Denis Ssozi Busiro North

Evelyn Anite Koboko Municipality

Esther Anyankun Nakapitipiriti Woman

Driwaru Zaitun Yumbe Woman

Doreen Amule Amolatar Woman

Donozio Kahonda Ruhinda

David Bahati Ndorwa West

Connie Nakayenze Mbale Woman

Clement Ongaro Karach

Cissy Namujju Lwengo Woman

Guma Gumisiriza Ibanda

Herbert Kabafunzaki Rukiga

Ilukor Charles Kumi

Isiagi Opolot Kachumbala

Jackson Kafuuzi Kyaka

James Baba Koboko

James Kakooza Kabula

Jennifer Namuyangu Kibuku Woman

Judith Nabakooba Mityana Woman

Komuhangi Margaret Nakasongola Woman

Margaret Muhanga Burahya

Mariam Naigaga Namutumba Woman

Michael Tusiime Mbarara Municipality

Mukisa Robinah Namayingo Woman

Mulindwa Ssozi Isaac Lugazi Municipality

Nathan Itungo Kashari South

Simeo Nsubuga Kassanda South

Paula Turyahikayo Rubabo

Peter Ogwang Usuk

Pius Wakabi Bugahya

Raphael Magyezi Igara West

Ronald Kibuule Mukono North

Ruth Katusabe Bukomansimbi North

Simon Lokodo Dodoth West

Solomon Silwany Bukholi Central

Nyomera Stella Napaka Woman

Obiga Kania Terego East

Stephen Kangwagye Bukanga

Susan Amero Amuria Woman

Tumusiime Rosemary Entebbe

Twesigye John Bunyaruguru

Robina Nabanja Kibaale Woman

Lubyayi John Bosco Mawokota South

Mirembe Lydia Butambala Woman

Soyekwo Kenneth Tingey

Sebikali Yoweri Ntwetwe

Suubi Kyinyamatama Juliet Rakai District

Tumuramye Genensio Kashongi

Charles Engola Oyam North

Obiga Kania Terego East

Nokrach William PWDs Northern

Ninsiima Kasirabo Boaz Kooki

Nagwomu Moses Bunyole East

Mwine Mpaaka Youth Western

Baba Boliba James Koboko

Babirye Kityo Breeze Sarah Central, Youth

Bahati David Ndorwa West

Bakkabulindi Charles Workers

Balyeku Moses Grace Jinja West

Baryayanga Andrew Aja Kabale

Baryomunsi Chris Kinkizi East

Arinaitwe Katambuka Rwakajara Workers

Amongin Jacquiline Ngora

Amoru Paul Dokolo North

Amule Ruth Doreen Amolatar

Angella Fred Moroto Municipality

Anite Evelyn Koboko Municipality

Amero Susan Amuria

Amin Idi Taban Kibanda North

Akurut Violet Adome Katakwi

Ali Moses Adjumani West

Abiriga Ibrahim Arua Municipality

Achia Terence Naco Bokora

Achieng Sarah Opendi Tororo

AGAINST REMOVAL OF TERM LIMIT

Name Constituency

Mwijukye Francis Buhweju

Nandala Mafabi Budadiri West

Odonga Otto Aruu

Angelline Osegge Soroti

Ogenga Latigo Agago North

Odur Jonathan Erute South

Ocen Peter Kole South

Jack Wamai Wamanga Mbale

Reagan Okumu Aswa

Felix Okot Ogong Dokolo South

Gilbert Olanya Kilak

Alex Ruhunda Fort Portal

Benard Atiku Ayivu

Atim Ogwal Cecilia Barbara Dokolo

Aol Ocan Betty Gulu

Akello Silvia Otuke

Akol Anthony Kilak North

Acidiri James Maracha East

Adeke Anna Ebaju Youth, Eastern

Ajilo Elogu Maria Goretti Kaberamaido

UNDECIDED

Name Constituency

Peter Sematimba Busiro South

Okello Anthony Kioga

Annet Nyakecho Tororo North

Nabulindo Kwoba Jane Busia

Ababiku Jesca Adjumani

Abigaba Cuthbert Mirembe Kamwenge

Achen Christine Ayo Alebtong

Angundru Moses Terego West

Anyakun Davinia Esther Nakapiripirit

Anywarach Carter Joshua Padyere

Aogon Silas Kumi Municipality

Arinda Gordon Kakuuma Bushenyi

Atim Beatrice Anywar Kitgum

Bebona Babungi Josephine Bundibugyo

Baseke Fred Ntenjeru South

Bategeka N Lawrence Hoima Municipality

Bbumba Syda Nakaseke North

Baguma Spellanza Muhenda Kyenjojo

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