News & Up­dates:

On 11th Feb­ru­ary, Par­lia­ment passed a mo­tion for the adop­tion of the re­port of the Com­mit­tee on Na­tional Econ­omy on the pro­posal to bor­row up to Euro 300 Mil­lion from Stan­bic Bank & Euro 300 Mil­lion from Trade De­vel­op­ment Bank to fi­nance the bud­get deficit for FY 2019/​20.

Hon Ba­hati David moved a Mo­tion for a res­o­lu­tion of Par­lia­ment seek­ing ap­proval of an amend­ment of the sec­ond Sched­ule to the Anti-money Laun­der­ing Act, 2013. This pro­poses the use of fi­nan­cial in­tel­li­gence tech­nol­ogy to com­bat money laun­der­ing and fraud.  The mo­tion was re­ferred to the Com­mit­tee on Fi­nance for con­sid­er­a­tion.

Par­lia­ment granted Hon. Rwabushaija Mar­garet, the Work­ers MP to in­tro­duce a Bill en­ti­tled ‘The Es­tab­lish­ment and Man­age­ment of Mar­kets Bill, 2019.  The Bill seeks to re­peal the Mar­kets Act Cap 94 of 1942, to pro­vide for the es­tab­lish­ment of own­er­ship and man­age­ment of mar­kets in Uganda in or­der to ad­dress the gaps in the cur­rent law.

Hon. Sse­ba­gala Ab­du­latif pre­sented a re­port of the del­e­ga­tion of the Par­lia­ment of Uganda at the 141st As­sem­bly of the In­ter-par­lia­men­tary Union held in Bel­grade, Ser­bia. He noted that the is­sues dis­cussed in­cluded Rule of Law, Gen­der Equal­ity and youth par­tic­i­pa­tion.

Mem­bers of Par­lia­ment showed con­cern about un­ful­filled pledges by Gov­ern­ment to Uganda Cranes.  Hon. Ba­hati, in­formed Par­lia­ment that the money was be­ing processed through bud­get­ing and ap­pro­pri­a­tion.

Hon. Sse­ba­gala Ab­du­latif raised a con­cern writ­ten to him by the Ugan­dan stu­dents in China in the Province of Wuhan which is highly af­fected by coro­n­avirus. He noted that the stu­dents were strug­gling fi­nan­cially be­cause they have been quar­an­tined for more than two weeks.

On the 12th Feb­ru­ary 2020, Hon. Mwiru Paul was granted leave by Par­lia­ment to in­tro­duce a bill en­ti­tled Con­sti­tu­tion Amend­ment Bill, 2020. He in­di­cated that the bill in­tends to re­duce the cost of lit­i­ga­tion in case one of the par­ties is dis­sat­is­fied with the elec­tion re­sults.

The At­tor­ney Gen­eral pro­vided a re­sponse to the con­cern of con­tin­ued en­force­ment of the law on idle and dis­or­derly de­spite the Pres­i­den­tial Di­rec­tive to Po­lice and KCCA for its sus­pen­sion. He said that the laws such as the Pe­nal Code Act needed to be amended for it to stop.

The Speaker asked Gov­ern­ment to ex­plain the is­sue of lo­custs in Uganda be­cause there was no clear in­for­ma­tion and Mem­bers were spec­u­lat­ing. Hon. Rwami­rama Bright in re­sponse said, ” The is­sue of lo­cust in­va­sion should not be taken as an is­sue for only Uganda. It is a re­gional is­sue and an in­ter­na­tional is­sue. We are us­ing rec­om­mended chem­i­cals to kill the lo­custs in Uganda and they won’t be harm­ful to the peo­ple.

On the 13th of Feb­ru­ary, five bills were read for the sec­ond time on the floor of Par­lia­ment. Hon. Ka­muntu Ephraim, Min­is­ter of Jus­tice and Con­sti­tu­tional Af­fairs, moved a mo­tion for the sec­ond read­ing of the bills en­ti­tled; Pres­i­den­tial Elec­tions (Amend­ment) Bill 2019, Par­lia­men­tary Elec­tions Amend­ment Bill 2019,  Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (Amend­ment) Bill 2019, Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Elec­tions (Amend­ment) Bill 2019 and Po­lit­i­cal Par­ties & Or­gan­i­sa­tions (Amend­ment) Bill 2019.

Dr. Jane Aceng, Min­is­ter for Health, made a state­ment be­fore Par­lia­ment on plans to sup­port the Ugan­dan stu­dents in Wuhan who are quar­an­tined be­cause of Coro­n­avirus Out­break in China. Dr. Aceng said that in the in­terim, the Gov­ern­ment was in the process of wiring $61,800 to sup­port the stu­dents as more eval­u­a­tion of the sit­u­a­tion takes place. She con­firmed that there was no Ugan­dan stu­dent who has con­tracted Coro­n­avirus.  Dr. Acheng in­formed Par­lia­ment that they had con­tacted var­i­ous air­lines that have flights to Uganda from China and the re­port is that char­ter­ing flights to Wuhan city are dif­fi­cult be­cause it is on lock­down.

Hon. Tu­musi­ime Rose­mary raised a con­cern that some peo­ple who use VIP sec­tion at En­tebbe Air­port were not be­ing screened for Coro­n­avirus.  In re­sponse, Dr. Jane Aceng noted that there are scan­ners at VIP sec­tion at En­tebbe Air­port, say­ing that they are right at the en­trance of the VIP sec­tion.

Hon. Mawanda Michael raised con­cern that the po­si­tion of Deputy Gov­er­nor Bank of Uganda has been va­cant for some time yet it is very crit­i­cal. He noted that the coun­try needed an ex­pla­na­tion on the ef­forts be­ing made by Govt to fill this po­si­tion.

Hon. Bettey Aol Ocan, Leader of Op­po­si­tion, raised a con­cern that the Ex­ec­u­tive has ig­nored the res­o­lu­tion of Par­lia­ment which sus­pended the new cur­ricu­lum pro­posed by the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion not­ing that the Min­istry has moved on to im­ple­ment the cur­ricu­lum. The Speaker of Par­lia­ment ruled that the Min­is­ter for Ed­u­ca­tion, Hon. Janet Kataaha Mu­sev­eni should ap­pear be­fore Par­lia­ment to clar­ify on the same.