Wilson Mwesigye, a peasant farmer from Mubende district has petitioned Court challenging the paying of sh103m to each MP to acquire new vehicles.
By John Semakula
A peasant from Mubende district has petitioned Court challenging the paying of sh103m to each MP to acquire new vehicles.
Wilson Mwesigye, a farmer from Mubende filed the petition on February 14, 20112 seeking an injunction to any further withdrawal of funds from the consolidated funds to pay MPs.
Mwesigye, through his lawyers, Mukasa-Lugalambi Advocates and Solicitors wants Court to issue the injunction and determine the emolument's of the MPs before removing it.
He argues that the nation is losing lots of money in disguise of paying the MPs' unconstitutional emoluments.
The petition is attached to an earlier one No. 31 of 2011 which he filed against the Attorney General and the Parliamentary Commission challenging the constitutionality of the withdrawal of funds from the consolidated fund at any time to pay MPs.
“I believe I have a strong case before this honorable court with high likelihood of success. It is an important case that is intended to save millions of Ugandans harrowing in abject poverty from the apparent plunder that is being done under our eyes,” the petition read.
New MPs started receiving sh103m each for purchase of vehicles last week.
There are over 170 new MPs. This means that government is to part with over sh17.51b for vehicles for the MPs.
The money was given out alphabetically and in phases, sources said on Monday. About 90 MPs have so far received their money through their bank accounts.
Sources said that the next lot is likely to get their money around mid this month.
The Parliamentary Commission had been planning to raise a budget for Land Cruiser Prados, sources said. The vehicles are meant to facilitate MPs especially in their constituencies.
However, it was not clear whether MPs who were in previous Parliaments and ministers would subsequently get the money.
Recently, Parliamentary Commissioner, Dr. Chris Baryomunsi denied knowledge of such an undertaking. “Noting has come yet,” he said when contacted.
He admitted that there was a lot of anxiety from the MPs, but pointed out that the Commission was still in negotiations with the Ministry of Finance over issue.
He revealed that negotiations had started, but the parties agreed to wait for inflation to come down before payments were effected.
An MP who is heading one of the parliamentary groupings confirmed that some new MPs had received the sh103m.
Asked whether this was the amount that the MPs requested for, a source said that determination of the amount had been left to the commission.
During the Eighth Parliament, each MP got sh30m for a vehicle while in the Seventh, each MP got sh20m.
The system of giving each MP money to buy his or her vehicle started way back in the Sixth Parliament with the new constitution where MPs were given the mandate to determine their emoluments.
Peasant petitions court over MPs car cash