The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has directed Members of Parliament not to discuss issues surrounding proposed amendments to the Constitution.
Reports are rife that some members of the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) are crafting plans to push for the amendment of Article 102 (b) to remove the presidential age limit cap of 75 years.
A section of legislators from the NRM have confirmed the plans, with the debate heightening after the Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, Kahinda Otafiire confirmed that the Constitutional Amendment Bill had been gazetted in the Uganda Gazette, the official government paper.
Some legislators including Nakaseke South MP, Paulson Luttamaguzi and Manjiya County MP, John Baptist Nambeshe said that they had received warning messages and calls from unknown people against supporting plans to lift the age limit.
In her communication to the House during the plenary today, Kadaga expressed concern over the threats that the MPs had received. She wondered why there was fervent debate on the matter yet the bill was yet to be tabled before Parliament.
“I have been reading in the press about the constitutional amendments and has caused excitement for and against the same. I have not seen the bill so I don’t know where the debate is coming from. People are debating I don’t know about what and there is anger and activism about this,” Kadaga said.
She then directed the legislators against speaking about the matter until government presents the constitutional amendments to the House.
“I require that none of you go to discuss that amendment because it is not there. Stop exciting the public and worrying them,” she ordered.
The Deputy Attorney General, Mwesigwa Rukutana, in response, rubbished the claims on the lifting of the age limit cap in the Constitution, saying Cabinet has never discussed the matter.
“I have seen the hullabaloo in the media about an impending constitutional amendment that has been sponsored by whatever party to do with lifting age limits. I want to allay the fears of MPs and suspicions of the public and I want to state that there is no such amendment. The age limit has not been handled yet,” Rukutana assured the legislators.