Uganda’s ‘Age Limit’ debate takes dramatic turn

By THE INDEPENDENT 

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Kampala, Uganda- Reports just in indicate that the debate on age limits on the Uganda presidency took a new turn Tuesday morning when a meeting of Members of Parliament (MPs) of the ruling party National Resistance Movement (NRM) resolved to move a private members bill to remove the age limit.

Reports from parliament indicate that the meeting that was initially called by the Chief Whip “to discuss the land amendment bill”, turned to the age-limit debate and the motion was overwhelmingly supported by the ruling party members. The same morning, taxi drivers and city vendors had marched to parliament calling for the lifting of the term limits for the presidency.

Article 102 (B) of the constitution sets the age range for president at 35 to 75 years of age, and Museveni who will be 76 in 2021 cannot run for the presidency again – unless the constitution is amended by the MPs.

The proposal by the MPs is wide-raning, and even aims to lower the bar of 35 to be removed so that anyone aged 18 years and above can run for both parliament and the presidency.

Last year, Uganda’s Parliament differed indefinitely a controversial motion to amend the constitution.

Speaker Rebecca Kadaga had then ruled that Nakifuma MP Robert Kafeero Ssekitoleko was not granted leave to move a private members bill, whose intention was to lift age limits of judges and the electoral commissioners.

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