According to Mike Mukula, the Eastern NRM Regional Vice-chairperson says the CEC mostly considers loyalty and interest of the party when picking a Speaker. He says this is what determines who will work in consideration of the interests of the appointing authority.
speaker’s race for the next parliament will not only depend on the criteria set
by the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party, which enjoy the
majority in parliament, but also the interests of top party officials. In May
this year, 529 MPs will elect the speaker and deputy speaker of the 11th
Parliament. The positions are currently occupied by Rebecca Kadaga and Jacob
Oulanyah as a speaker and deputy speaker respectively.
The duo has
served for two five year terms. Although MPs elect the speaker and deputy
speaker of parliament, the candidates must garner support from the NRM Central
Executive Committee (CEC), which has turned out to be the most powerful organ
when it comes to top jobs in Parliament and the Government. CEC comprises President,
Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the NRM Chairperson, First National Vice-chairperson
Moses Kigongo and 2nd National Vice-chairperson Female, speaker of parliament,
Rebecca Kadaga and six regional vice-chairpersons namely the Deputy Speaker,
Jacob Oulanyah, (North), Mike Mukula (East), Chris Baryomunsi (West), Godfrey
Kiwanda (Central), Singh katongole (Kampala) and Simon Peter Aleper for
are the Secretary-General, National Treasurer, Deputy Secretary
General, Deputy National Treasurer, Chairperson of NRM Parliamentary
Caucus, All Chairpersons of the National Special League Committees,
Chairpersons of Commissions, National Secretaries and Deputy National
Secretaries determined by NEC. Some analysts say ultimately, the speaker’s race
will go to whoever is in good books with the CEC members. This is based on the
analysis of the past script of the 2016 speaker’s race between Kadaga and
it took the intervention of president, Museveni to convince Oulanyah to step
down and give Kadaga a chance to serve one more term. He also convinced MPs to
vote Oulanyah against the Central Kampala MP, Muhammad Nsereko. Some CEC and
NRM member, they select candidates for the position of the Speaker or Deputy
Speaker based on the five tenets of loyalty, credibility, dedication, national
appeal and capacity to steer the house well.
Mike Mukula, the Eastern NRM Regional Vice-chairperson, says the CEC mostly
considers loyalty and interest of the party when picking a Speaker. He says
this is what determines who will work in consideration of the interests of the
appointing authority. Mukula says although qualifications, experience and knowledge
of the law count a lot, candidates need to be people of good repute and
character with a national appeal and loyalty to the party.
“One has got…
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Mukula says that although the job of the Speaker is chairing debate in
parliament, the interest of NRM as a party in power supersedes the interest of
Parliament as an institution when they are looking for a Speaker.
“The party midwives …
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Ambassador Matayo Kyaligonza, A former CEC Member, says NRM considers
experience. “If you are the Speaker, you are an arm of the Government, if you
are the Chief Justice, you are an arm of Government, and if you are the
President, you are an arm of the Government. The three contribute to the
leadership of the country, you cannot dispense yourself from working with the
Executive,” Kyaligonza said.
He says that
at the end of the day, NRM will not look at someone who is non-cooperative. He
says whether one is an MP or a Speaker, at the end of the day one has to work
with the President and the laws that are passed are for the country. Mwambutsya Ndebesa, a Senior History Lecturer
at Makerere University, says the support of the President will a big
determinant for whoever is elected speaker of parliament.
says that the party is likely to consider how people voted in the regions, regional
balance, sharing national cake and who appears to have done more work when
selecting the speaker. He says the pressure from the regions will determine how
NRM chooses the Speaker. Mwanbutsya says that although people expect a
stiff race between Oulanyah and Kadaga, it will not happen since Museveni will
resolve the matter either by maintaining the status quo or move one of the
candidates to another position.
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He says populism
and the interest of Parliamentarians whether real or imagined will determine who is
elected speaker of the next parliament. Dr.
Sam Kazibwe, a lecturer at the Uganda Christian University (UCU), says that
history has shown that NRM not only considers loyalty to the Party but also to
the party chairperson, saying this might determine how NRM selects the Speaker.
Kazibwe, although the current leadership of Parliament is very competent, he
does not think the NRM will look at competence as a key.