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Kadaga Speaker, Oulanyah Deputy

By Vision Reporter

Added 19th May 2016 11:21 AM

MP Raphael Magezi moved a motion to nominate Kadaga for the post of Speaker. Dokolo Woman MP Cecilia Ogwal seconded the motion. At this moment MP Mukasa Majegere proposed that the nominations be closed.

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Speaker Rebecca Kadaga taking oath. Photo by Miriam Namutebi

MP Raphael Magezi moved a motion to nominate Kadaga for the post of Speaker. Dokolo Woman MP Cecilia Ogwal seconded the motion. At this moment MP Mukasa Majegere proposed that the nominations be closed.

Kamuli Woman MP Rebecca Kadaga was on Thursday unanimously elected Speaker of the 10th Parliament.

Jacob Oulanyah was also elected Deputy Speaker beating his sole challenger the Kampala Central MP Mohammed Nsereko. Oulanyah polled 300 votes against Nsereko’s 115.

There race for Deputy Speaker was by secret ballot. President Yoweri Museveni witnessed the exercise.

MP Raphael Magezi moved a motion to nominate Kadaga for the post of Speaker. Dokolo Woman MP Cecilia Ogwal seconded the motion.

The Deputy Chief Justice Steven Kavuma presided over the election of the Speaker. He was designed by the Chief Justice Bert Katureebe who is out of country on official duties.

Ogwal described Kadaga as person of integrity and required skills to steer Parliament to another level.  

“Hon. Kadaga has demonstrated impartiality when carrying out her duties. As a mother hen, she protects MPs regardless of their political affiliation. She believes in building the Uganda Parliament into a strong and independent Parliament. She is a people's Speaker. She listens to several issues such as land grabbing, disasters that affect Ugandans,” Ogwal said.

As she left her seat to the podium to take oath and for an acceptance speech, members shouted, “our girl…, our woman… Kadaga...”

The oath was administered by President Yoweri Museveni who also handed over instruments of power.

Kadaga a former minister of state for communication became a Deputy Speaker from 2001-2011 and Speaker 2011-to date.

 Speaker Rebecca Kadaga being congratulated by fellow MPs. Photo by Miriam Namutebi



Considered by colleagues to be independent minded and confident, NRM MP Rebecca Kadaga has represented Kamuli district as Woman MP since 1996.

But the NRM national vice chairperson, who is single, was an MP for Kamuli district in 1989. The 59-year-old Kadaga was born in Kamuli district and went to Namasagali College for her high education. After studying law at Makerere University, she graduated with the degree of bachelor of laws in 1978.

She went on to obtain a diploma in legal practice from the Law Development Center in Kampala in 1979. In 2000, she obtained a diploma in Women's Law from the University of Zimbabwe. In 2003, she obtained the degree of Master of Arts, specialising in Women's Law, also from the University of Zimbabwe.

When she opened Kadaga and Company Advocates in 1984 after a stint as legal assistant at Obol Ochola Law Chambers, analysts said then she seemed set for a life away from government and direct participation in politics.

But, they said, the government service she started as Kamuli MP in 1989 built up to her current position in the third-highest political office as Uganda's first female Speaker of Parliament.

Her landslide victory of 302 votes to Forum for Democratic Change Nandala Mafabi's 72 on 19th May 2011 signaled Ugandan MP's readiness to follow her example of putting national interests above party politics. Validation for "the people's speaker" tag came quickly.

In April 2012 when Uganda became the first East African country to host the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the world's largest union of 159 national Parliaments, she called on NRM and non-NRM support in showcasing Uganda's positive attributes to the visiting delegates.

But FDC and Activists for Change (A4C) staged a walk-to-work protest during the assembly that was, in her opinion, the 9th Parliament's contribution to Uganda's golden jubilee celebrations. Many opined the opposition had taken advantage of her accommodative attitude.

Observers say the style with which she referees parliamentary sessions is evenhanded, a trait so unusual among party-affiliated politicians that she has publicly said she will not give in to pressure from fellow NRM party members to muzzle opposition voices.

The example of her conduct, and directly marketing a Ugandan candidate to other states helped Margaret Zziwa become a Speaker at the East African Legislative Assembly.

For such efforts she won an award for helping the East African integration process, and also earned the respect of most Ugandans for being the voice of reason in a Parliament fraught with political frictions.

She is one of the political luminaries of Busoga sub-region and exudes the virtues of confidence and assertive.

Many MPs, while contributing on a motion to congratulate her upon being elected chairperson of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians International in September 2013, asked her to run for presidency after describing her as a national leader.

The then Leader of the Opposition Nandala Mafabi urged: "We want you to take Uganda to a higher level. We want leaders who are intelligent and we shall never betray you," he said.

In one of her interviews with New Vision, Kadaga said she would like to be remembered as the Speaker who fought for the independence of Parliament.


The 51-year-old Oulanyah was born on March 23, 1965.

He went to Lalogi Primary School, Nabumali High School, St. Joseph College Layibi, Dr. Obote College Boroboro and completed A'level at Kololo Senior Secondary School. At Makerere University, Oulanyah studied agricultural economics.

And without further ado, he enrolled for a degree in law at the same institution. While at Makerere, Oulanyah had contested for guild presidency but stepped aside in favour of Norbert Mao (eventual winner). He afterwards ran for the Speaker of the guild and won.

Following his graduation from Law Development Centre (LDC), Oulanyah worked as a lecturer at the centre in 1997. During the same timeframe, Oulanyah began private law practice at the law firm of Oulanyah, Onoria & Company Advocates.

In 2001, he entered politics by successfully contesting for the parliamentary seat of Omoro County in Gulu district on the Uganda People's Congress (UPC) ticket.

In 2005, his critics said he chaired the parliamentary legal committee that recommended the constitutional amendments lifting the presidential term limits. But Oulanyah vehemently denies the allegation of recommending removal of term limits. He also participated in the peace talks between the government and the Lord's Resistance Army rebels.

In 2006, standing as a UPC candidate, he lost his re-election bid. In July 2006, he quit the UPC and joined the ruling party. In 2008 he served as the chairman of the commission of inquiry into the controversial sub-lease of Kisekka Market, one of the municipal markets in the city.

In March 2011, Oulanyah was elected to represent Omoro County in the Ninth Parliament, this time on the NRM ticket. He was elected as Deputy Speaker of Parliament on 19 May 2011. But the Opposition has accused Oulanyah of being partisan and siding with government to pass anti-people policies.

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