Oulanya Faults Museveni on EC Budget
The Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah has blamed President Museveni for inadequately funding the Electoral Commission.
Oulanyah was today meeting officials from the Electoral Commission led by its Chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama, who complained of lack of funds to hold elections in seven new districts, which will become effective in July this year.
“Parliament does not propose the budget, under the financial initiative it is the president who should make these proposals and we appropriate,” he said
Oulanuhah cited Article 66 of the constitution which demands Parliament to appropriate sufficient funds to facilitate the work of the Electoral commission.
He however said that before appropriation, the budget is proposed by the de jurie Minister for Finance, who is the President.
“We are casting the burden on parliament to look from within the budget to see if they can generate sufficient money [and this] should not be the case,” said Oulanyah.
The Electoral Commission requires Ugx 7 bn to cater for elections in the districts of Namisindwa, Pakwach, Butebo, Rukiga, Kyotera and Bunyangabu whose operations start on July 1, 2017.
“The law requires us to at least have a woman MP in place in the first two months, but there is no single coin allocated for the polls,” said Byabakama.
Mr Byabakama also said that delays to have polls as prescribed, is injurious to the legal framework since it overrides the time frames for which one is supposed to hold the office.
“When we don’t have the resources to do what the law commands us to do it means that we are being led to break the law,” he said.
The Deputy speaker said that it was erroneous for the Executive to deny funds for central strategic undertakings.
“An institution like the EC should not be asking for money because it is the handmade of democracy in the country, it is the one that facilitates it, guarantees it and thus it must be sufficiently resourced in terms of man powers, investment and capital,” Oulanyah said.
The deputy Speaker also stressed that no one would object to the facilitation of the Electoral Commission, not even from the opposition.