In Uganda, the reform of the Constitution, which provides for the removal of the age limit for becoming president and would allow President Museveni, who has been in power since 1986, to run in the 2021 election, continues to be controversial. The parliamentarians received the tidy sum of nearly 7,000 euros each to return to their constituencies to conduct, officially, consultations on this reform. But Wednesday, October 25, a dozen opposition members went to Parliament to return the money, arguing that it is corruption.
They are about ten deputies, bundles of banknotes in hand, to be descended to the accounting department of the Ugandan Parliament, Wednesday, return the money recently received on their bank accounts.
Despite the reluctance of the administration, the money is officially deposited. Opposition MP Ibrahim Semujju, also a spokesperson for the Democratic Forum for Change (FDC), explains the move. “We say no, we cannot be part of this process of corruption. This money was diverted from posts for which it had been approved by the Ugandan Parliament. That is why we have returned this money and we are calling on all members, including those on the government side who are still concerned about this country, to bring this money back, “he urges.
But not all parliamentarians agree with that. James Kakooza, a majority MP, thinks it is normal to have a specific budget for these special missions. ” This money is not an income,” he says. It is given for a particular purpose. And I think the Speaker of Parliament has been very clear. She said: Parliament gives you this mission. The job of a member of Parliament is that once you have been given a mission, you do it. If you do not want to, then in those cases, you make the money. ”
Members have until November 8 to conduct their consultations on the ground. They will then report to Parliament from the point of view of their constituents on this issue of the age limit for running for the supreme office.