11 January 2019

Uganda: Kadaga Asks World Leaders to Protect Female MPs From Cyber Harassment

Malta — The Speaker of Parliament, Ms Rebecca Kadaga's, proposal to include cyber harassment of female Members of Parliament among the top agenda for the Commonwealth speakers conference has been adopted.

Ms Kadaga is attending a pre-conference agenda setting meeting in Malta, a head of the bi-annual Commonwealth speakers and presiding officers meeting in Canada in 2020.

"I vouched for a discussion on the cyber harassment of Members of Parliament, especially female MPs because you find that they are the most victims of cyber bullying and harassment and it is becoming a new normal in our countries," she said.

The Commonwealth Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers started in 1969, and is intended to encourage the independence and impartiality of speakers, promote knowledge and understanding of parliamentary democracy, among others.

Ms Kadaga's proposal comes in the wake of a legal battle between student Brian Isiko and Kabarole Woman MP Sylvia Rwabwogo.

Independent MPs

Mr Isiko is appealing against a conviction of cyber harassment and offensive communication Ms Rwabwogo secured against him following alleged incessant love messages he sent to the MP.

Ms Kadaga also raised the issue of independent MPs, who she said are rising in number and should receive a higher consideration.

At a recent news conference, MP Andrew Baryayanga (Kabale Municipality, Ind) said he is introducing a Private Members' Bill which seeks to allow independents sit on the Parliamentary Commission, the Legislature's highest decision making body currently exclusive to the ruling NRM and Forum for Democratic Change party.

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