Aruu County Member of Parliament (MP) Odonga Otto has petitioned the president of the governing council of International Parliamentary Union (IPU) to ban Speaker Rebecca Kadaga from their activities for allowing security personnel to rough up legislators opposed to the lifting of term limits recently.
Kadaga was elected president of the African Geopolitical Group at the IPU 135th Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland in October last year.
In her role as the leader of all African parliaments that are members of IPU, she is supposed to co-ordinate pertinent and emergency matters on the African continent
In a letter written on behalf of other aggrieved MPs, Otto urges the IPU president to ban the Speaker from “all IPU and all other international parliamentary forums activities as we believe she does not deserve to sit in a league of democrats,” Otto notes.
Otto who was among the MPs evicted from the house on September 27, notes that Kadaga okayed the disgraceful arrest of 24 legislators who were mainly Opposition MPs who were bundled on Police trucks and detained in different facilities
He also indicates that most of the MPs who were arrested were injured and others are still hospitalised.
“We are aware that the Speaker of Parliament of Uganda is supposed to present a paper on Sunday October 15 entitled ‘promoting cultural pluralism through interfaith and interethnic dialogue,’ which we pray does not see the light of day,” Otto requests the IPU President.
However, in a rejoinder to Otto on Friday, Parliament’s director of communications, Chris Obore, described Otto as an individual being driven by a personal vendetta he has with the Speaker.
“To personalise the unfortunate incident to the Speaker might be an error in Judgment. The Speaker did not instruct any MP to offend the rules of procedure and fight their neighbours, neither did she command security operatives who evicted the MPs from the house,” Obore noted.
Obore advised Otto to follow the laid down procedures in the parliamentary rules and privileges where any MP who has grievances against the Speaker is given an opportunity to raise them rather than writing on social media.
Chaos broke out in the parliamentary chambers after Kadaga ordered for the ejection of 25 MPs who had defied her directive to leave the House after she suspended them for being undisciplined.
The MPs who included Otto were opposed to a motion which was being brought by Igara West MP Raphael Magyezi intended to among others lift the 75 year cap for presidential candidates.