Speaker Anita Among

Speaker of Ugandan parliament Anita Among has urged her counterparts in the legislative assemblies of the East Africa Community (EAC) to support the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, (Amendment), 2023 in order to protect and preserve African values.

Anita Among revealed this at the Bureau of Speakers of National Legislatures and the East African Assembly held in Arusha-Tanzania on Friday, May 19.

“As you may all be aware, the Parliament of Uganda, which I am delighted to Chair, passed the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which now awaits the President’s assent. The Bill was received with mixed reactions, especially from our foreign donors. However, as a People-centered Parliament, we stood for what majority of the populace wants,” Among said.

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She added, “Our culture and values are rapidly eroding, because of the vice of homosexuality that is now taking a toll on our children. It is therefore my humble appeal to you all to join the fight to protect values.”

Anita Among said that the Bill will heavily contribute to the overall target of sustaining unity within the East African region.

 “Our culture and values as a Community are our identity, and it is what affords us due recognition. We must preserve and protect it,” Among said.

She however apologized for her inability to physically join the meeting due to the constitutional timeline within which the Parliament of the Republic of Uganda has to pass the National Budget.

“I am thankful that our gathering here today is an affirmation of our unwavering commitment to an East African Community that works for everybody, more especially, the common East African,” she appreciated.

The key agenda Items for the meeting were;

The Draft Bill on the Establishment of the Bureau as an Organ of the Community

Enhancement of cooperation between EALA and National EAC Legislatures

She noted that the Bill may require an amendment to Article 9 (1) of the treaty for the establishment of the EAC, given the absence of clear provisions in the Treaty of EAC providing for establishment of new organs.

“In the meantime, it will be grossly beneficial for us to have a Secretary General of EAC to engage with the EAC Heads of State on the sidelines of the subsequent Summit’ Among said.

She further revealed that since its inception, the East African Parliamentary Institute is yet to realize its full potential. Its growth and development is dependent on member legislatures meeting their subscription obligations. The parliament of Uganda reiterates its full support for a vibrant responsive and credible East African parliamentary institute.

She said Uganda is ready to host the institution in case no member state applies. Adding, “I hope that in our subsequent meetings, we will be able to review the recent East African Inter-Parliamentary Games held in Juba, South Sudan.”

“Honorable Colleagues, I underscore the need to form functional relationships between our National Legislatures, in line with passing resolutions, especially those that protect and serve the interests of our people,” she concluded.

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