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Opposition MPs protest Kadaga conduct, walk out of House

Leader of Opposition in Parliament Winnie Kiiza. File photo.

KAMPALA–Following the rejection of all of their procedural concerns, opposition MPs have decided to walk out of Parliament.

This was shortly after the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, rejected MP Cecilia Ogwal’s pleas to have MPs suspended earlier to return and participate in the debate.

However, Kadaga stood her ground and gave a go ahead to the debate.

Earlier, the Leader of Opposition had raised a procedural concern, saying the members hadn’t been properly suspended since their suspension came after Parliament had adjourned.

She thus asked Kadaga to allow them back then correctly suspend them if need be but this too was turned down.

MP Ssegona also raised a concern, reminding the Speaker about her earlier ruling barring the debate on the Age Limit Bill pending a court decision but this was blatantly rejected.

Even when MP Nandala Mafabi raised an issue about some MPs on the government side standing while MP Oboth Oboth is on floor, this too was rejected.

“The Hon members are standing on their chairs,” she ruled.

It’s at this moment that a large section of Opposition MPs walked out of the House. The already large turn up of government MPs – some whom were standing found this as an opportunity to get some comfort. They occupied the space left by opposition on orders of Kadaga.

Speaker Kadaga in the morning suspended seven MPs following a heated debate on the Age Limit Bill.

Among those suspended include Gerald Karuhanga, Ibrahim Nganda, Mubarak Munyagwa, Moses Kasibante and Allan Ssewanyana, among others.

The legislators were suspended as Speaker Kadaga adjourned the House to 2pm.

Addressing media shortly after the suspension, Karuhanga said Kadaga had become more political than a Speaker.

“The Speaker first adjourned the House before she read the suspension. When you adjourn the House, members move out. So this suspension doesn’t count because the House had been adjourned,” Karuhanga noted.

Munyagwa said he was to talk to Kadaga to find out the reason for his suspension.

“Why did she suspend me? I am one of the most disciplined MPs in that House. I tried as much as I could to exercise restraint….. I just can’t understand why I was suspended.”

The Age Limit Bill is back in Parliament for the second reading and by press time, the debate was ongoing.

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