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Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

Uganda’s Constitution has finally been approved to be scrapped, changing article 102 (b) of the Constitution. The article to be scrapped bars a person less than 35 or more than 75 from running for presidency of the country. However, having it scrapped, now leaves any one free and eligible for presidency.

The bill was supported in the parliament on December 20, by the members of the ruling NRM party, who are the majority in the House. 317 parliament members voted in the bill’s favor while only 97 voted against it.

After the bill was passed in the parliament, it was sent to the President, Yoweri Museveni, who had to sign it into law, as the last stage.

According to the sources and Don Wannyama, the Senior Presidential spokesman, President Museveni had signed the bill in to law on December 27, 2017. It was however announced to the public on Sunday 31, 2017, as the President was giving his 2017 end of year address.

‘He assented to the bill after the speaker of the parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, wrote to him “It’s now law”,’ Don Wanyama informed on Tuesday.

While addressing the gathering, the President thanked the ruling party members of the parliament for voting in favor of the bill, and called them “the liberators of Uganda”.

“I salute the 317 MPs who defied intimidation, alignment, and blackmail and opted for a flexible Constitution to deal with destiny issues of Africa,” Museveni said.

‘The Parliament enabled us to avoid the more complicated paths that would have been required. We cannot under-cook the destiny of Africa,’ Museveni added.

Currently, the 73 year old Museveni is eligible to running for presidency until he wishes to stop.

The now law, has been talked about by the angry opposition members of parliament and the citizens, who have all said that the move has been so expected and didn’t come as a surprise since it has all been Museveni form the beginning.

‘It sets a bad precedent for the country, what Ugandans need is not a life presidency,’ Livingstone Sewanyana, executive director of Kampala-based Foundation for Human Rights Initiative, said, ‘We are not surprised by his assent to the bill because it was largely his scheme.’

Museveni is one of the presidents who have helped themselves cling on to power by changing the constitution and taking other means. First he changed the country’s constitution in 2005 and removed the term limits, and now, it is the age limit removed – sources explain.

Erias Lukwago, Kampala Lord Mayor and a lawyer, has informed that the opposition is to organize a team of lawyers to challenge this law in courts of law because it takes away Uganda’s opportunity of a peaceful handover of power from one president to another.

Museveni on the other hand, said that the age limit prevented the people from choosing their leaders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reporter: Shamilah Namuddu

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