The Leader of Opposition in Parliament (LoP) Winnie Kiiza has warned the Inspector General of Police (IGP) General Kale Kayihura, telling him not to disrupt their consultative meetings over a bill tabled by Igara West Member of Parliament Raphael Magyezi that is aimed at lifting the presidential age limit constitutionally capped at 75 years.
Yesterday the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga met with all parliamentary whips and directed them to send their members to their respective constituencies for the consultative meetings and, in a press statement issued today at Parliament LoP Kizza said Gen. Kayihura had been informed about the Speaker’s directive by the opposition.
“We want to let Gen. Kale Kayihura know that we have designed our consultative meetings; it’s up to him to mobilize us security rather than interfere with us as we commence our meetings about the bill,” Kizza said, adding: “The IGP has been informed and we hope he doesn’t play like he always does; if he continues disrupting us, we shall find other ways to deal with him.”
According to Ms. Kizza, by seeking views on Magyezi’s ‘private members bill’ the MPs including those in opposition are carrying out their constitutional mandate and should not be hindered.
Many in the opposition say Magyezi’s bill is aimed at paving a leeway , for president Museveni to contest for presidency in 2021 when aged 77 years, two above the constitutional cap.
“Removal of the age limit is like taking us to a vehicle without brakes, yet we all know the consequences,” Ms. Kizza said and called upon the general public to shun MPs who lure them to support the bill.
Currently, the Magyezi bill is before legal and parliament affairs committee for scrutiny followed by the consultations, after which the committee will vote to refer it to the house for debate.
Since the issue surfaced, it has caused anxiety, reaching a crescendo recently when Ms. Kiiza, the Kasese Woman MP, walked out of the parliamentary chambers after being denied a chance to comment on the private members bill shortly after its mover Magyezi, tabled it before legislators.
On the same day there was chaos, forcing Speaker Kadaga to suspend 25 MPs including the State Minister for Water Resources Ronald Kibuule, who allegedly sneaked a gun into the parliamentary chambers in contravention of the rules.
In the ensuing chaos, officers from the Special Forces Command (SFC) stormed the chambers to throw out the MPs, in the process injuring among other MPs Angelina Osegge, Betty Nambooze and Francis Zaake Butebi.