The Con­sti­tu­tion (Amend­ment) (No.2) Blll, 2017 was read for the first time on the 3rd of Oc­to­ber, 2017 and sub­se­quently re­ferred to the Com­mit­tee on Le­gal and Par­lia­men­tary Af­fairs for scrutiny.

The man­ner in which the mo­tion seek­ing leave for the in­tro­duc­tion of the pri­vate mem­bers’ Bill on the 27th of Sep­tem­ber, 20l7 was con­tro­ver­sial. This was pre­ceded by the ejec­tion of some mem­bers of Par­lia­ment from the Cham­ber by strangers.

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The Bill pre­sented to par­lia­ment by Igara West MP Raphael Magyezi seeks to among oth­ers amend Ar­ti­cle 102(b) that caps the pres­i­den­tial age limit be­tween 35 and 75 years, to­day marks the 3rd day of de­bate.

What MPs say:

MP Ssemuli An­thony (Mubende Mu­nic­i­pal­ity NRM)

“The voice of the peo­ple is the voice of God, and we can­not go against the voice of God, my peo­ple are NRM sup­port­ers and they said don’t touch it”.

Min­is­ter Ka­rooro Oku­rut(NRM):

“There are 54 coun­tries in Africa and it’s only Uganda and 3 oth­ers with the up­per age limit. Even the oth­ers are de­bat­ing on how to re­move the up­per cap be­cause they have re­al­ized that democ­racy is not premised on the age cap, I asked my peo­ple and they said we should amend the con­sti­tu­tion and re­move the age limit. “

Min­is­ter Eve­lyn An­ite NRM:

“I moved in 3 di­vi­sions on Koboko Mu­nic­i­pal­ity, 99% of the peo­ple said to touch the con­sti­tu­tion and squeeze ar­ti­cle 102 (b) out of the con­sti­tu­tion , my peo­ple stated clearly that they can­not imag­ine them­selves go­ing to the bal­lot with­out say­ing the name of Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni come 2021, we are en­joy­ing peo­ple in North­ern Uganda free­dom be­cause of Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni, we now have tar­mac roads and peace be­cause of Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni.”

Hon Tusi­ime Michael (Mbarara Mu­nic­i­pal­ity (NRM)

In­formed the Par­lia­ment that he con­sulted very widely and got the in­struc­tions that he should not only sup­port the amend­ment but that I should vig­or­ously sup­port it.

Asamo Hellen (East­ern re­gion PWDs)

The rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Peo­ple with Dis­abil­i­ties (PWDs) told par­lia­ment that she car­ried out 5 con­sul­ta­tions in the east­ern re­gion and that her vot­ers told her to sup­port the amend­ment of Ar­ti­cle 102(b).

“The power to vote lies with the peo­ple of Uganda. It is the peo­ple to vote out the pres­i­dent or vote them in. Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni did not bring him­self on that seat, it is the peo­ple who brought him,” said Asamo.

“Per­sons with dis­abil­i­ties sup­port the re­moval of pres­i­den­tial age limit and the en­tire age limit bill. PWDs are tired of be­ing called for elec­tions all the time; a 7-year term for will save us”, she said.

Kyad­dondo East MP Robert Kyag­u­lanyi Ssen­tamu

Asked leg­is­la­tors to con­sider the his­tor­i­cal tra­jec­to­ries that be­fell or­derly rule in Uganda. Kyag­u­lanyi, pop­u­larly known as Bobi Wine says that the amend­ment of the Con­sti­tu­tion should be in line with fos­ter­ing Peace, de­vel­op­ment and good gov­er­nance of the Coun­try.

The law­maker says that it is the leg­is­la­ture to pro­tect the Con­sti­tu­tion, rather than leave it to what he de­scribed as an arena of self­ish po­lit­i­cal ac­tors.

De­bate con­tin­ues to­day with the promise of vot­ing as state by Speaker Kadaga yes­ter­day.