Igara West MP Raphael Magyez during the First Reading of the Bill

The controversial bill by Igara West MP Raphael Magezi seeking the removal of the 75-year age cap for presidential eligibility has today been referred to the Legal and Parliament Affairs Committee for consideration following the first presentation before Parliament.

During the plenary Magyezi tabled the Constitution Amendment Bill (No.2), 2017 for First Reading, but the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga referred it to the Committee, which will decide whether it is worth deliberating upon or throwing out altogether.

Last week Magyezi, seconded by MPs Moses Balyeku, Jackson Karissa and Doreen Amule, was granted a 40-day leave by Speaker Kadaga to prepare the ‘Private Members Bill’ seeking the amendment of Article 102 (b) of the 1995 Constitution, something that is viewed by many Ugandans as an attempt to pave the way for President Museveni to stand for presidency in 2021 when aged 77 years, two years over the cap.

The Bill has since caused anxiety and anger in almost eqal measure, with the opposition MPs clashing with their ruling party counterparts on the floor of parliament, something that resulted in the suspension of 25 legislators including the State Minister of Water Resources Ronald Kibuule, who allegedly sneaked a gun into the parliamentary chambers.

During the fracas in which several opposition legislators including Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi and his Makindye East counterpart Allan Sewanyana were forcefully evicted, MPs Angelina Osege and Francis Butebi Zaake were injured, with the latter currently admitted at Rubaga Hospital.