By Brian Mayanja
Pressure is mounting on the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) president, Maj. Gen. Mugisha Muntu, to appoint the next opposition Chief Whip.
The battle is between Aswa County MP Reagan Okumu and Kasese Woman MP Winfred Kiiza. Since the two MPs belong to the pro-Muntu group, the party president is caught between a rock and a hard place.
Kiiza is the current Chief Whip. Between 2006 and 2008, she was the deputy opposition Chief Whip. Okumu is a member on the natural resources and human rights committee.
In a meeting convened this week by pro- Muntu MPs, to strategise on how to grab juicy committee jobs, sources said the issue of the Chief Whip was not resolved. They said it was forwarded to Muntu.
“Gen. Muntu promised to handle the matter next week. He will make the final decision,” one MP said.
The MPs were meeting a political team, which Muntu assigned last week to propose suitable candidates to occupy the contested positions in Parliament. New Vision learnt that those fronting Okumu say he deserves the post, since he is one of the founder members of FDC.
“Okumu worked hard to promote the Reform Agenda in northern Uganda. During those difficult times, when the Government was arresting whoever was associating with Dr. Kiiza Besigye, Okumu never abandoned the struggle,” one MP said.
MPs supporting Kiiza to retain the job, say she has performed to the party’s expectation. Efforts to get a comment from Kiiza were futile, but when contacted, Okumu said: “I will not turn down the opportunity, if I am given a chance to serve as the Chief Whip.
However, I prefer to lead from behind because I create more impact.” He said NEC members would soon review all the positions in the party and assess the performance of the leaders.