The sectarian politics in Uganda is the source of regional underdevelopment. When Members of parliament gang up against Ugandans to ringfence the job of speaker for the Uganda parliament for Nilotic people, then you begin to understand how politically bankrupt the Uganda politicians are. The politics of “Our own” vs Uganda will never unite Ugandans, but keep them divided and slaves to the political class.
Legislators from Lango, Acholi and West Nile sub-regions have vowed to not participate in elections for Speaker of Parliament slated for this Friday if one of their own is not chosen to succeed Jacob Oulanya.
At least 102 MPs from the Greater North arrived at this resolution during an impromptu meeting held at Parliament on March 22, 2022.
“Our position is that if CEC fails to select any of the names from Northern Uganda that have expressed interest today for the position of the Speakership of the 11thParliament, we have agreed that as the three Parliamentary Caucuses from Lango, Acholi and West Nile we shall not turn up to vote on Friday to vote for the Speakership,” said MP Samuel Opio in a press conference at parliament.
“We shall instead remain and continue mourning for our brother the Rt Hon Speaker Jacob Oulanyah,” Opio warned.
Oulanya passed away on March 20, 2022 at a hospital in Seattle, United States, barely a year after ascending to the helm of the August House.
He had served as Deputy Speaker under Rebecca Kadaga for ten years.
So far, Felix Okot Ogong (Dokolo South), Jackson Atima (Arua Central), Dennis Hamson Obua (Ajuri North), John Amos Okot (Agago), Jane Ruth Aceng (Lira City Woman MP) who hail from this domain have expressed interest in succeeding the Speaker.
Others include; Deputy Speaker Anita Among, Deputy Attorney General (DAG) Jackson Kafuuzi, Sarah Opendi Achieng, Theodore Ssekikubo, Markson Oboth Oboth, Alex Kintu Brandon, Florence Asiimwe Akiiki and Amos Wakabi.
The Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the ruling NRM party, which has majority numbers in Parliament, will this Wednesday nominate its flag-bearer for the election of Speaker.
The Northern Region is yet to zero on one candidate.
“These are therefore not individual expressions of interest; these are expressions of interest for the Speakership Position for Northern Uganda,” said Opio.
The Chairperson of the West Nile Parliamentary Caucus Lawrence Biyika wants NRM’s CEC to invoke a precedent which was set in the East Africa Legislative Assembly (EALA) By – Elections.
“The position of the Speaker should be ring fenced for the North. Just from experience, we lost a member from the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA), the position was ring fenced for the central region. And borrowing from that precedent set, these 102 members who met here agreed that the position of the Speaker should be ring fenced for Northern Uganda,” Biyika requested.
Uganda is a democratic country whose leaders are elected through elections.
However, some analysts argue that this type of politics is good for regional balance and preventing political conflicts.
James Kakooza was in July 2021 elected to fill the EALA slot which fell vacant following the death of Uganda’s representative Mathias Kasamba (Buganda).
Biyika and Opio contend that replacing Oulanya with a candidate from Northern Uganda will help the ruling Party consolidate support in the Greater North.
“In the recently concluded 2021 General Elections, the population overwhelmingly voted for the NRM Government. The Speakership position was given to them but we haven’t yet served, we have just started. And therefore there is need for continuity,” Opio reasoned.
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