Government has today re-tabled the proposed amendments in the 2010 Kampala Capital City Authority Act, after it has been shelved for two years under unknown circumstances.
The Kampala Capital City Authority Bill, 2015 tabled by the minister of State for Kampala City Authority Beni Namugwanya, intends to provide for the Lord Mayor to be elected from the Councilors and to clarify on the roles of the Lord Mayor and deputy Lord Mayor.
The bill also seeks to rationalize provisions relating to the metropolitan physical panning Authority among other.
Meanwhile, upon receiving the bill, the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga tasked the Presidential Affairs Committee of Parliament to handle the bill and report back to Parliament in 49 days.
To streamline and strengthen the governance of the Capital City in accordance with Section 5 (A)of the Constitution”, the Article states that, “Uganda shall consist of the districts specified in the First Schedule to this Constitution and such other districts as may be established in accordance with this Constitution or any other law consistent with it.”
The bill also seeks “to provide for the Lord Mayor to be elected by the Council from the councilors; to clarify the roles of the Lord Mayor [and] to rationalise the provisions relating to the Metropolitan Physical Planning Authority with the structure and provisions relating to the Capital City Authority and related matters.”
According to the highlights of the bill, Mr Frank Tumwebaze, the then Minister of Presidency and Kampala stated that the existing law is faced with several defects, among them, the continued administration of the City under a decentralized system yet it was given a ‘special status’ as a City Authority and that this was the main cause of “contradictions and clash of roles.”
Other defects according to Mr Tumwebaze are in section 11(1, b)of the current law which “vests the power to convene and preside over meetings of the Authority only in the Lord Mayor [and that] in the absence of the lord mayor, many fundamental activities of the Capital city cannot be discharged and implemented.”
Pertaining position, powers and roles of the lord Mayor, the minister stated that, it is erroneous to provide for the Mayor to have executive pores and as the “political head of the Capital City yet Kampala Capital City is administered by the Central Government where the minister should be the political head with executive powers.
As a remedy to the ‘defects’ Mr Tumwebaze proposed the need “to re-assert the powers of the central government in the administration of Kampala Capital City Authority by vesting more powers in the Minister by making him or her the Political Head of the Capital City.”
The bill under clause 5(4) provides for the Lord Mayor to be elected from within the composition of the council.
If adopted by Parliament, the Lord Mayor who chairs council sessions will be elected from within the Composition of the council, breaking the Status quo where the Mayor has been directly elected by city dwellers.