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Age Limit: Three MPs withdraws from Teso Parliamentary Group

Ochen says he cant continue subscribing to a group whose only goal is to serve Musevenis interests.
Three opposition legislators from Teso have withdrawn from Teso Parliamentary Group, which brings together legislators from the sub region over the presidential age limit.

 

They are Julius Ochen, the Kapelebyong County Member of parliament, Herbert Ariko, Soroti Municipality and Soroti Woman MP, Angelina Osege.

 

Both Ariko and Osege belong to the opposition Forum for Democratic Change-FDC party while Ochen belongs to Uganda People's Congress-UPC. They accuse their chairperson, Patrick Okabe, the Serere County MP of using his position to please president, Yoweri Museveni.

 

Okabe belongs to the ruling National Resistance Movement party. Ochen says he can't continue subscribing to a group whose only goal is to serve Museveni's interests.  

The MP accuses Okabe of telling president, Yoweri Museveni during his recent visit to Bukedea district that all members of Teso Parliamentary Group support the scrapping of the presidential age limit, a claim he dismisses as false.

 

Osege says the leadership of the group has also been attempting to distribute money to MPs to support the Constitution (Amendment) (No.2) Bill, 2017, which seeks to scrap article 102 (b) from the constitution that caps the president's age at 75 years.

 

Ariko, who has been the Secretary General of Teso Parliamentary Group, says he is tired of being part of a weak leadership, saying he will only return once a new leadership is put in place. Okabe denies the accusations leveled against him as mere political propaganda aimed at tarnishing his reputation.

 

"All members of Teso Parliamentary Group know the benefits of being in an association. We have been using the group to lobby government to do a number of projects for our people,” Okabe said. He insists that Teso Parliamentary Group serves the interests all of the people of Iteso irrespective of their political beliefs.

 

This is not the first time some members are withdrawing from the group. In 2006, Musa Ecweru, the Disaster Preparedness State Minister withdrew from Teso Parliamentary Group, which was then dominated by the FDC party legislators.

 

The group is comprised of 33 members of parliament drawn from all the constituencies in Teso sub region.

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