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Highs, lows of 2018 as Uganda Parliament ends year

Moses Kaziba, Employee of the Year , Department of Communication and Public Affairs receives his prize from Cecelia Ogwal. PHOTO PARLIAMENT OF UGANDA

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT |  Speaker Rebecca Kadaga has given Parliament a good report card to end 2018 at the annual joint staff and MPs’ party.

Kadaga was all praises for Parliament staff, who she said do a lot for the House, but that their efforts go unacknowledged.

“Whenever Parliament reaches a milestone, it is always the Speaker, Deputy, Clerk and MPs…but behind this is a team of committed foot soldiers who get things done,” said Kadaga.

She called for an improved working relationship with the government, a relationship she said had been blighted by “difficulties” in the closing year.

She listed the death of MP Ibrahim Abiriga, the jolly Arua Municipality MP who was killed by assailants who remain at large to date, as one of the setbacks.

Legislation in the second session, she said, was of a higher frequency than the previous sessions, adding that the House will resume from the Christmas recess to “work because we are not short of business”.

The Clerk to Parliament, Jane L. Kibirige, in an earlier address, applauded staff for their efforts but said a lot needs to be done. She hailed the reward and recognition scheme as a benchmark for performance and an avenue of rewarding effort and contribution.

“I applaud the Human Resource Department that came up with the reward and recognition scheme…it is an important tool to assess progress and motivate staff, but it is also a good scorecard of performance and good conduct,” she said.

Kibirige thanked Speaker Kadaga, whose leadership she said has steadied the rise of the institution.

The fired up Thursday evening party saw the Opposition, National Resistance Movement and Independent MPs freely break bread together, peaked with an energetic performance from MP Robert Kyagulanyi (IND, Kyaddondo East), aka Bobi Wine.

In the year ending, the construction of the new Parliament Chambers continued to progress, with projections for completion set for 2020 as the jewel of the 10th Parliament.

To award excelling staff, was Commissioner Cecilia Ogwal (FDC, Dokolo district) who said staff should work with the knowledge of Parliament’s vision and mission as their guiding spirit.

“Whenever they are to interview staff of Parliament or those who want to join, I always encourage those MPs (interviewers) to ask the simplest of questions…like the vision and mission of Parliament, but you find that majority of staff do not know that,” said Ogwal.

She applauded the Clerk and staff for improved performance, advising that the same should continue so as to augment the institution’s success.

The Leader of the Opposition, Betty Aol Ocan, said as the year nears end, staff and MPs should find time to make merry and be with their families, before hectic work sets in at the beginning of the year.

Parliament broke off for the Christmas and New Year recess on 20 December 2018 and will resume business on 8 January 2019.



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