The Deputy Speaker of parliament, Jacob Oulanyah has granted
government extra two months to conclude consultations on the Administration of
Judiciary Bill, 2018.
Oulanyah made the decision after Deputy Attorney General, Mwesigwa
Rukutana asked for additional two months to conclude consultations on a few
"sticky issues" in the Bill.
He however, said parliament is ready to debate the report of the Legal
Committee on the Bill, which was presented last year.
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Rukutana declined to state the sticky issues in the Bill that
require extra time for consultations.
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The Bill among others seeks to operationalize Constitutional
provisions on the mandate of an independent judiciary as an arm of
government and provide for retirement benefits of judicial officers. It
also seeks to ensure that the Judiciary manages the recruitment,
supervision, and discipline of its staff.
Bill also provides for retirement benefits of judicial officials, which is
among the contentious clauses. It provides for retiring judicial
officers to leave with their full benefits.
On Tuesday, the Ndorwa East MP, Wilfred Niwagaba proposed
that the House adopts the motion for the Bill to be read for the second time
for debate to commence.
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Oulanyah agreed with Niwagaba and put the question for the
motion to be adopted, which was done.
However, before he could direct that
debate on the committee report commence, Oulanyah gave Rukutana a chance to
justify his request for an extension of two months.
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Kaberamaido Woman MP who also a member of the Legal Affairs Committee,
Veronica Eragu Bichetero, said that there is need for MPs to read the report
because it was presented a year ago.
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The Legal Affairs Committee endorsed the Bill with several
amendments. They include among others the removal of the Chief Justice and
Deputy Chief Justice from the Judiciary Advisory Committee and that the
Secretary to the Treasury should be answerable to Parliament and not the Chief
The committee also rejected the proposal to extend
benefits to judicial officers who have since retired.