December 6, 2021

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House asks 3 weeks for succession bill

Robinah Rwakoojo

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The House has granted a request for three more weeks by the Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs to conclude with processing the Succession Amendment Bill, 2021.

The bill which seeks to ensure equality and equity in the distribution of the estates of the deceased returned to the 11th Parliament after it was considered as part of business that lapsed following the end of the term of the 10th Parliament.

It repeals the succession law which is traced back to 1906. The bill provides for the rights of women and also ensure equality between the spouses in the distribution of property or estates of the deceased. It also makes it compulsory for testators to provide for spouses, lineal descendants, and dependent relatives in their wills. 

The appeal for extension was made by Hon Robina Rwakoojo, the committee chairperson, also Gomba West County MP.

“Whereas the committee has been able to interact with different stakeholders, we still have consultative meetings in some selected districts which are yet to be undertaken, it is on this not that I request for three more weeks to enable the committee to finish its work,” Rwakoojo said.

Citing disharmony between the surviving spouse and dependent relatives among other challenges in the bill for his refusal to assent, the President then returned the bill in August for reconsideration.

Some of the clauses rejected by the President state that where the intestate is survived by a spouse and a dependent relative with no lineal descendants, the spouse shall receive 80 per cent and the dependent shall receive 20 per cent of the whole property of the intestate.

The current law gives 50 per cent of the estate to the widow or widower, 49 per cent of the estate to the dependent relative and one per cent to the customary heir.

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