Constitution not written by God, we can change it-Otafiire

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Kahinda Otafiire

Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister, Kahinda Otafiire, says the Ugandan constitution was not written by God and therefore, can still be changed by Ugandans.

Otafiire’s remarks come at a time a section of legislators are demanding for a referendum on the proposed constitutional amendment to lift the age limit for persons seeking to contest for the presidency.

The demand comes at the backdrop of reports a section of National Resistance Movement [NRM] legislators have mooted a plan to amend the constitution to allow Museveni to contest for the presidency in 2021 and that the constitutional amendment bill on the same has already been gazetted.

Under the current provision in article 102(b) of the 1995 constitution, President Museveni would not be eligible to contest for the seat.

Born in 1944 and in power since 1986, Museveni will hit the limit before the next presidential election.

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Article 102(b) states that a person is qualified for election as President if that person is not less than 35 years and not more than 75 years.

President Museveni will be 73 this year and 77 in 2021.

Otafiire gave his opinion on the matter paying tribute to former Kampala mayor, John Ssebaana Kizito, in a special sitting presided over by Deputy Speaker, Hon Jacob Oulanyah, on Thursday.

“The constitution of Republic of Uganda is not my property, it is not written by God, it belongs to Ugandans,” Otafiire told the house.

He said all articles of the constitution are subject to amendment, if and when the people of Uganda say so.

“If the people of Uganda want articles of the Constitution changed, they will be changed but if they don’t, then it won’t.”

Legislators like Kampala Central MP, Muhammed Nsereko, are already organising their colleagues to block the controversial bill which continues to raise dust in academic and political circles.

Lubega Medard Sseggona called upon legislators to work together and let the spirit of the Late Ssebaana guide them in keeping the constitution intact.

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