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    Kadaga Calls For Increased Public Involvement In Legislative Process

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    The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, has called for public involvement in the law making process instead of stampeding the legislature at implementation stage.
    Citing the United Kingdom where the public is consulted before Bills are presented before Parliament, Kadaga said that in Uganda public participation remains limited and called for more engagement with the constituents.
    “The public does not fit into our work yet. We do not necessarily have to consult everyone but we can take samples from different parts of the country so we have a voice of the people in the process,” Kadaga said.

    The Speaker made the remarks while presiding over the opening of the Second Annual Legislature Sector Review at the Speke Resort, Munyonyo, Thursday, 20 September 2018. The review is being held under the theme, ‘Legislating for sustainable development’.

    She added that an application that is being designed by Parliament to track the work of committees will enable public engagement in the legislative process.
    “This app will now facilitate the public to comment on the Bills especially after First Reading because it is difficult for them to get involved at Second Reading,” she added.

    Kadaga said the influence of the Executive in the final decision making processes hampers the delivery of work of Parliament and hence affects its independence.
    “The separation of powers is very crucial in providing checks and balances,” she said adding that, “this calls for government institutions to take action and act on recommendations as per the discussed reports in order to improve accountability and service delivery.”

    Lwemiyaga MP, Hon Theodore Ssekikubo, welcomed the idea of involving the public in the law making process citing the recent passing of the Excise Duty Bill, which introduced tax on mobile money transactions that was not received well by the public.
    “If these consultations are done before passing of the Bills, it will save us the embarrassment. The views of the public can be incorporated before government brings the Bills for consideration,” Ssekikubo said.

    The Clerk to Parliament, Jane Kibirge, said the review is held to identify strong areas of performance and areas for improvement with the aim of informing the planning process of the next financial year. At the sector review, Parliament is carrying out a self-assessment exercise. In 2008, the Inter-Parliamentary Union developed a self-assessment toolkit to assist parliaments assess their performance against widely accepted criteria for democracy and governance.

    The self-assessment will assist Parliament to undertake an analysis of its performance during the third session of the 10th Parliament. This will lead to the identification of strengths, weaknesses and formulation of recommendations for reform and development. The report will then be presented to the IPU Secretariat by the Speaker.

    The sector review is attended by Members and staff of Parliament, development partners and officials from the National Planning Authority.

     

    By Stella Mugoya

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    POLITICS

    Parliament Commemorates Late Speaker Jacob Oulanyah

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    Parliament held a special plenary on March 23rd to commemorate the life of fallen speaker emeritus Jacob Oulanyah.

    Parliament set aside March 23rd (Oulanyah’s birthday) as a day to remember his life and service to parliament and Uganda at large.

    During plenary, minister of ICT Chris Baryomunsi said the late speaker was eloquent, punctual, smart, intelligent and was always there for others.

    Minister of health Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng also acknowledged that Oulanyah was significant in the growth of Uganda’s health sector. Aceng said the late speaker would spare time and explain to people health issues.

    Hon. Lillian Aber (Woman MP Kitgum) said Oulanyah would do the right and was an inspiration. Aber added that Oulanyah always wanted to see each system effective.

    Hon Ssemujju Nganda spoke of the late as a very selfless man that always settled disputes with every one.

    “I want to thank the late Jacob Oulanyah even when you had trouble with him, he took it upon himself to reach out to you to resolve the matter,” he said.

    Speaker Jacob Oulanyah died on March 20th last year and was replaced by Anita Among. Oulanyah served as deputy speaker twice before being voted as speaker of Parliament.

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    Commonwealth Lawyers Caution M7 On Dismissal Of Justice Kisakye

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    Lawyers under the Commonwealth Lawyers Association (CLA) have protested the removal of Justice Esther Kisakye from office.

    In a written statement by the association, the Commonwealth Lawyers have called upon president Museveni to carefully consider the implications of Justice Kisakye’s dismissal.

    The lawyers say that judges should only be subjected to suspension only when they are incapable or if they misbehave.

    “Judges should be subject to suspension or removal only for reasons of incapacity or misbehaviour that clearly renders them unfit to discharge their duties,” part of the statement reads.

    The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) last month recommended the removal of Justice Esther Kisakye from office and have her probed over her misconduct and attack on chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo.

    Justice Kisakye’s troubles began following the 2021 election petition by National Unity Platform president Robert Kyagulanyi in which she gave a dissenting opinion from other judges.

    Justice Kisakye in her ruling said Kyagulanyi had not been given enough time to present his case.

     

     

     

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    Karamoja Iron Sheets Scandal: Speaker Among Returns 500 Iron Sheets

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    Speaker of parliament Anita Among has revealed that she has bought 500 iron sheets to compesate those meant for the vulnerable in Karamoja that were misallocated  by the minister of Karamoja affairs Hon. Goretti Kitutu.

    Among told parliament on March 15th that she bought the iron sheets because she does not want to be accused of grabbing iron sheets that were meant for the vulnerable in Karamoja.

    Speaker Anita Among is among the government officials who were cited in the Karamoja iron sheet scandal. Among is reported to have received 500 pieces of iron sheets. However, Among claimed she did not request for the iron sheets but admitted that she saw them in her district Bukedea.

    Other government officials that received the iron sheets include vice president Jessica Alupo, minister Rose Akello, Agnes Nandutu, prime minister Robinah Nabbanja, minister Amos Lugolobi, finance minister Matia Kasaija, Minister Maria Goretti Kitutu, government chief whip Denis Obua among others.

    The Karamoja iron sheet scandal sparked off when family members of minister Goretti Kitutu were found in possession of iron sheets meant for the vulnerable in Karamoja region. Minister Kitutu told the committee on presidential affairs, during the probe, that she was not guided thus misallocating relief items meant for Karamoja.

     

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