MPs Walk Out Of Road Committee Meeting

2804 Views Kasese, Uganda

In short
The formation of the Kasese district Road committee on Wednesday ended prematurely on Wednesday, after three opposition Members of Parliament stormed out citing involvement of partisan politics in a public cause.

The formation of the Kasese district Road committee on Wednesday ended prematurely on Wednesday, after three opposition Members of Parliament stormed out citing involvement of partisan politics in a public cause.

MPs Yokasi Bihande for Bukonzo East, William Nzoghu of Busongora North and the district woman MP Winfred Kiiza, stormed out of the meeting at the district headquarters in Rukoki saying that the ruling National Resistance Movement wanted to influence the process.

Addressing a press conference in Kasese town shortly after the aborted meeting, the three legislators said in a statement that NRM members in the meeting wanted the leadership of the committee to be established along party lines.

The angry MPs said that one of their colleagues, Yokasi Bihande, had been nominated unopposed to chair the committee but were stunned by the idea of the district Chairman, Lt. Col. Mawa Muhindo, who turned down the nomination arguing that such a committee cannot be headed by a member of the opposition. All the three legislators belong to the Forum for Democratic Change.

It is reported that Col. Mawa then suggested that Kasese Municipality MP James Mbahimba becomes the district road committee chairman because he is a member of the ruling NRM and is in a better position to lobby for the district road network. 

Bihande said that when he and his FDC colleagues called for the election of a chairman by consensus, the NRM members in the meeting refused.

The Uganda National Roads Authority Act 2008 simply stipulates that the Chairman of the committee should be one of the members of parliament hailing from the district.

The remaining members in the meeting went ahead to confirm MP Mbahimba to chair the district road committee that is aimed at lobbying for a better road network in the entire district.

Col. Mawa, who chaired the inaugural meeting of the committee, confirmed to URN reporter that Mbahimba was democratically elected to head the committee despite the withdrawal of the opposition MPs.

Col. Mawa said that the three MPs were outnumbered by the majority members in the meeting and refuted reports that it was the NRM plan to fail them.

Winfred Kiiza, however, said that since the there were only two of the six MPs from the district by the time of the vote, the committee is illegal because there was no quorum.

Busongora South MP Kafuda Boaz, Mbahimba were the two NRM MPs present since Dr. Crispus Kiyonga, the Bukonzo West MP and minister for Defense minister, was also absent.