Leader of Opposition in Parliament, Mr Mathias Mpuuga has rallied opposition MPs to put aside their differences and work together to restore rule of law and constitutionalism in the country.
Addressing Opposition MPs who are attending a workshop on constitutional and electoral reforms, the Nyendo Mukungwe MP said current state of the country’s rule of law and constitutionalism has occasioned wasteful expenditure of public resources and increased political tensions.
“The opposition in and outside Parliament needs to find the necessary motivation and drive to make these areas for reform rallying points for the entire country and all stakeholders in Uganda’s democratic process. We need to summon the traditional and non-traditional bases into this conversation. It should become a matter of public duty and burden like most other citizenry obligations, not a preserve of politicians and their traditional allies.” Mpuuga said.
He says now is the time to urgently initiate the need for constitutional and electoral reforms to shape Uganda’s political landscape.
“The existing legal and regulatory framework for elections is not sturdy enough to guarantee free, fair and peaceful elections. The country needs reform to the Constitution and legislation that affirms and supports the independence of the Electoral Commission, protects against the disenfranchisement of Ugandans, protects the rights of opposition candidates and ensures principles of transparency…” he added.
According to Mpuuga, Uganda’s Constitution has lost its identity and purpose, adding that the citizens can no longer wait for the constitutional review by the government.
He accuses the government of deliberately stalling and derailing all efforts geared towards electoral and constitutional reforms.
“I don’t find it tenable to wait for the Constitutional Review by Government. Over the last three years, there have been vain attempts by the Government to initiate constitutional and electoral reforms. It is this deliberately obscure stance that prompted some of our colleagues, like Hon Wilfred Niwagaba, to initiate Constitutional (Amendment) Bills. But this process was foiled to pave the way for the Government process. I believe Parliament should assert its role and sufficiently apply itself to the legitimate demands of our time,” , Mr. Mpuuga told fellow lawmakers.
Mpuuga has thus tasked the opposition MPs to actively engage in the discussion as they address pertinent issues of governance bankruptcy and dictatorial tendencies.