Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Ugandan legislators have started arriving at parliament for Thursday’s session that is expected to discuss constitution ammendments, including the lifting of the age limit for the presidency.
Most Kampala television stations were broadcasting live from parliament, and several other spots in the capital that is gripped by the new constitution proposals by the ruling party NRM.
The precincts of parliament, reports indicate, are tense as the premises have been surrounded by police, anticipating a backlash from some citizens and MPs opposed to the lifting of the controversial Age Limit Art 102 (b).
The Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga and her deputy Jacob Oulanyah have received two notices of motion in relation to constitution amendments and are meeting Thursday morning with the business committee to determine if the two can be scheduled for the plenary session that is set to start at 2pm.
Parliament has received a notice of motion from Igara West MP Raphael Magyezi, who is seeking leave of parliament to introduce a private members bill to amend the constitution on issues which include the age limit. He has already got the backing of over 280 NRM MPs who discussed the ammendment in a caucus meeting on Wednesday.
Another motion before the speaker is from MPs opposed to the removal of the presidential age limit and seeking for the establishment of the constitution review commission to get views from the public about the constitutional amendment.
No marches, says Police
Ahead of today’s session in parliament, Ugandan police banned all protests set for Thursday when lawmakers debate plans to scrap a presidential age limit.
Police chief Kale Kayihura said in a statement that a planned protests was intended to cause “violence and mayhem” and urged demonstrators to use “indoor meetings” to express their opinion.
“Parliament should be left to debate without undue, irresponsible, let alone criminal, protest,” he said.