Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah conducted several COVID-19 tests from 2nd June to 22 June before traveling to the UK, and in all he emerged negative according to family sources.
Oulanyah last presided over the sitting of the 11th Parliament during the reading of the 2021/2022 budget on June 10th at Kololo Independence grounds. This raised speculation with several media reports indicating that the Speaker was down with COVID-19.
The Deputy Speaker Anita Among chaired the house on the day that Vice President Jessica Alupo and Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja were approved. Oulanyah was also not present at the swearing-in ceremony of the recently appointed Ministers at Kololo on Monday.
But according to the Director of Communications and Public Affairs at Parliament, Chris Ariko Obore, the speaker traveled to see one of his children in the UK, and was also shocked by the news doing rounds that he was ill with COVID-19.
“He traveled to the UK, but it is in no way related to sickness or anything but to see his son who he has not seen for a long time,” said Obore.
Asked on Oulanyah’s silence on the matter, an assistant who works with Oulanyah said that he does not want to keep answering statements and things coming from the media which are incorrect.
Another person close to Oulanyah said that some people around him had tested positive for COVID-19 at some point, and this forced the Speaker to frequently do several tests just to be careful.
“When people were asking where the Speaker was, by then he was simply at home after a tiring campaign, but the consistent thing is that he was taking fluids to boost his immunity, and also doing tests to ensure that he is safe, but none of the tests were positive,” said the source.