Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | General Mugisha Muntu, the former Alliance for National Transformation-ANT party presidential candidate has asked parliament to reflect on its past mistakes and avoid being manipulated by the Executive.
He made the proposal while appearing before the Human Rights Committee of parliament led by its Vice-chairperson Agnes Taaka Wejuli. The committee is probing cases of electoral violence in the just concluded general elections.
Although the committee sought answers from Muntu on whether he faced rights violations throughout his campaign, he told the members that all the problems the country is facing stem from their actions such as the removal of the presidential term limits, presidential age cap and failure to act on the Supreme Court decisions and recommendations for electoral reforms.
He says the biggest mistake of the 10th and 7th Parliament was the scrapping of the presidential age limit and two five year term limits respectively. He says that MPs should not look at their survival but look at the stability and development of the country.
Muntu said that Parliament has failed to keep the Executive in check and is currently being manipulated, which is causing many problems for Ugandans.
He says although the Legislature, the Judiciary and the Executive need to cooperate, each must be able to play their role without fear or favour. Muntu says that as it stands now, the violence and the use of money and control of state security to intimidate Ugandans by the state needs to be checked by the Parliament. He says government is in a drunken stupor, which they are not ready to get out of and it is the role of the MPs to wake up the government.
Asked by Amuru Woman MP Lucy Akello to comment on his tenure as UPDF commander in the 90’s and how he managed to maintain sanity in the country, Muntu said then, the contention for those who wanted to be President was not yet intense.
He said that he was one of the people who struggled to ensure that there was delinking of the struggle and the government and thereby worked towards professionalizing the army. Muntu says he currently sympathizes with the commanders who sometimes know they are doing wrong but go on for survival.
Muntu says he once proposed the removal of the army from Parliament, which was never accepted even though Uganda has now moved to a multiparty system.