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MPs back Kadaga on panel of speakers to chair plenary sittings

Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga wants a panel of speakers to chair plenary sittings in the absence of the speaker and the deputy. (PHOTO/File)

KAMPALA – Parliament has moved a motion to consider having a Panel of Speakers to assist the Speaker and Deputy Speaker in presiding over the House.

The proposal was debated alongside a motion by Mr. David Abala the Ngora County for a resolution of Parliament to give thanks to God for the health the Speaker.

Government has since 2005 been reluctant to agree to Parliament’s request for a Speakers Panel.

“We have to recall that on numerous occasions Parliament has doubtlessly benefitted from having the person of the Speaker at the helm of its leadership in ways that she only could provide. She has wooed Parliament through turbulent times with valor and resilience,” he said.

Abala added that the Bible in Luke l7:15 says that we need to give thanks. At an appropriate time we should hold a thanksgiving prayer to give thanks for restoring the health of the Speaker. The Speaker was taken ill in March.

The Wednesday, 29 May 2019 Parliament sitting was her first session to chair since she returned from bed rest.

The seconder of the motion, Ms. Cecilia Ogwal, the Dokolo District Woman MP, said that everything happens for a reason and the whole House was concerned about the Speaker’s wellbeing.

“In all circumstances, we need to thank the Lord. We need to have additional people (Speakers Panel) to reduce the workload of the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker, especially in the House. We need to balance work and health; when we lose our health then the work cannot be done,” she said, before reading from Psalms 124: 6-8.

MP. Thomas Tayebwa, said that it is only the privileged who can help those who are not fortunate enough.

“The beauty is that the privileged help the less privileged. A story is told about monkeys that celebrated at the farmers’ death only to realise after a year that it was the hand that fed them. So all those who rejoiced on social media will realise that you impacted them at one time,” he said.

Ms. Jacqueline Amongin the Nogar District MP, proposed an amendment to the motion to permit for the renaming of the Institute of Parliamentary Studies in honour of the Speaker.

“You have played a great role in this country and continent. I have been around the world and there is a precedent that has been set. I would like to urge members so that we have a Rebecca Kadaga Institute of Parliamentary Studies,” she said.

The Speaker thanked the members for their concern and requested government to construct more specialised hospitals and distribute them evenly. “It is very ironical because I fell ill after passing the money of the specialised hospital along Entebbe Road,” she said.

Ms. Kadaga said that during her time at the Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya, she interacted with many Ugandan doctors who confessed to her that they had left Uganda for better pay.

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