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MPs debate presidential benefits

By Vision Reporter

Added 22nd October 2009 03:00 AM

A proposal to pay Moses Kigongo, the former chairperson of the National Resistance Council (NRC), benefits of a former vice-president sparked off a heated argument in Parliament yesterday.

A proposal to pay Moses Kigongo, the former chairperson of the National Resistance Council (NRC), benefits of a former vice-president sparked off a heated argument in Parliament yesterday.

By Catherine Bekunda
and Mary Karugaba

A proposal to pay Moses Kigongo, the former chairperson of the National Resistance Council (NRC), benefits of a former vice-president sparked off a heated argument in Parliament yesterday.

MPs were debating a report of the presidential affairs committee on the emoluments and benefits of the President, Vice-President and the Prime Minister Bill.

The Bill seeks to provide for the emoluments and benefits for the leaders while in office and on retirement.

The committee had recommended that Kigongo also be awarded the benefits, saying his position as NRC chairperson between 1986 and 1995 was equivalent to the position of Vice-President under the 1995 Constitution.

Reacting to the proposal, MPs Nandala Mafabi, Odonga Otto and Beatrice Anywar (all FDC) said Kigongo was never a vice-president but was speaker of the NRC, which acted as the legislature.

The MPs wondered why the committee proposed benefits for Kigongo when the Speaker of Parliament and the deputy’s benefits were not provided for in the Bill.
An explanation by public service state minister Seezi Mbaguta that her ministry had concluded the Bill catering for the Parliament’s heads fell on deaf ears.

The debate on the Bill was adjourned to today to enable further consultations.
But information minister Kabakumba Masiko requested that the Government be given one week for consultations, which Speaker Edward Sekandi agreed to.

The committee advised that the Bill should not be limited to leaders who have served under the 1995 Constitution.
The committee and MPs also agreed that a retired President, his vice and premier use their remuneration to purchase their retirement homes.

MPs debate presidential benefits

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