KAMPALA – The former Leader of Opposition, Winnie Kiiza has said the deputy speaker missed a point in her decision of banning MPs without covid certificates from accessing parliament because, at the onset of the pandemic, parliament had to change the rules of procedure to provide for virtual representation.
Kiiza who was speaking at a virtual town hall meeting on November 1, under a theme dubbed ‘The COVID-19 Global political responses: What are the benefits, costs and implications?’ shared that the speaker of the house would be the last person to infringe on the rights of representation that the MPs carry because by blocking an MP out of the house, you are closing out the members he or she represents.
“I think the speaker errored in law, inhuman and in morality. The vaccines are not enough to vaccinate all the people of Uganda, why would we front the leaders first, a good leader should front their subjects. Our country is dead; the ones we think are fighting for us are not. Humanity is being corrupted and has lost the moral fabric of how society should be,” she said.
Kiiza shared that it is absurd and the government is using covid to propagate what they want to propagate.
“With time, they will start saying MPs have forged cards (to bar them from attending certain sessions) because it is them controlling the system.”
Uganda’s Parliament announced a no-access policy for all unvaccinated members, staff and visitors effective November 1.
In an October 29 letter addressed to all the 529 Members of Parliament (MPs), staff and the public, Mr Henry Yoweri Waiswa, the deputy clerk to Parliament, said the move is to ramp up the uptake of Covid-19 vaccines in line with presidential guidance.
“The Office of the Speaker [of Parliament] is in agreement with the President’s observation and in the communication of the Rt Hon Deputy Speaker (Anita Among) at the sitting of Parliament on Thursday, October 28, 2021, she gave a directive that access to the precincts of Parliament should be restricted to only Members of Parliament, staff and visitors that will show proof of vaccination against Covid-19,” Mr Waiswa noted in his letter.
He added: “Honourable Members and staff, in line with the Rt Hon Deputy Speaker’s directive, therefore, you are hereby informed that with effect from Monday, November 1, 2021, access to the parliamentary precincts will be restricted to ONLY those that have been vaccinated against Covid-19. By copy of this letter, the Sergeant-at-Arms is directed to work with the Division Police Commander – Parliamentary Police, to enforce these guidelines.”