Shs200m buzz as NRM caucus meets over age limit

Burahya County MP Margaret Muhanga

The National Resistance Movement (NRM) caucus is meeting Tuesday morning to scrutinise the age limit report before it can be brought to Parliament.

The report was compiled by the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs committee over the weekend during a retreat at Serena Hotel in Kigo.

Silwany Solomon, the Deputy Government Chief Whip, told on Monday that the ruling party will take a position on the report before the final debate in the house.

He said the meeting will take place at the Office of the Prime Minister in Kampala.

Earlier, Margaret Muhanga, the Caucus spokesperson, said non-governmental organisations were bribing MPs to keep away from the house Tuesday.

She said at least 10 MPs were given air tickets by NGOs to dodge the age limit debate.

Reports circulated claiming the ruling party and other MPs totalling to 305 who support the age limit removal will be given Shs200m each as a “thank you” for seeing the bill through.

When the legal committee met President Museveni, anti-age limit MPs said the president had promised the team that compiled the report Shs300m.

Silwany told the alleged Shs200m bribe for those who favour the scrapping of the clause were “mere rumours without a bearing”.

The Government Chief Whip, Ruth Nankabirwa, did not answer our questions, citing a busy schedule that involved a cabinet meeting.

Minority report?

Lwemiyaga County MP Theodore Sekikubo who is cooking a minority report that challenges the committee report that approved the age limit bill, has cautioned fellow legislators against adopting the seven-year term for the president.

The idea, proposed by President Museveni while meeting the committee recently, is that a political term for both the President and Members of Parliament be adjusted to seven years as opposed to the current five years.

The committee while, in a retreat at the Kigo-based Serena Conference Centre, also adopted the restoration of term limits.

Ssekikubo says that although the restoration of term limits is welcome, members need to be mindful of the dynamics that lie ahead.

Kassanda North MP Patrick Nsamba Oshabe (NRM) said the 7-year-term is nonsense and warned fellow NRM colleagues not to be fooled

The Minority Report is signed by Wilfred Niwagaba, Medard Lubega Sseggona, Muhammad Nsereko, Anna Adeke Ebaju, Ssemujju Ibrahim Nganda, Mathias Mpuuga, Abdu Katuntu and Monica Amoding.