Residents of Ayivu County in Arua district have branded the proposed Marriage and Divorce Bill as a useless piece of legislation.
By Richard Drasimaku
Residents of Ayivu County in Arua district have branded the proposed Marriage and Divorce Bill as a useless piece of legislation that will not protect the institution of marriage, but legalise immorality.
They claimed that proponents of the Bill are the elite women eyeing the storeyed buildings of businessmen in the city and towns in case of a failed marriage. They said the Bill makes no sense to a rural woman housed in a grass-thatched house on communal land.
Urging the area Member of Parliament Bernard Atiku to oppose the Bill, they argued that restarting debate on the Bill was a waste of time and a diversionary tactic to turn MPs focus away from scrutiny of the Office of the Prime Minister, where billions of PRDP funds have been stolen.
“You should be making laws to combat corruption and theft of public funds. MPs have a lot of useful work to do, not wasting time on discussing bride price,” Elikanah Otaa, a resident, said.
He said the contents of the Bill were a direct assault on the sanctity of sex between married people and a direct contradiction of Lugbara culture, where bride price is paid to seek blessings from the elders for having carnal knowledge of their daughter.
Some residents also said provision of sh5m to MPs to specifically organise the consultations on the marriage Bill was bribery, saying it was not necessary since MPs have their usual facilitation for visiting constituencies.
“We already have enough laws to protect marriages. Therefore, such meetings should rather be organised to sensitise people about the laws,” said Dick Nyai, the former MP for Ayivu county.
Marital Bill is useless, Ayivu residents say