Can the Executive Spare Minister Persis Namuganza ?

By Brenda Namugenyi

Namuganza is accused of undermined the powers of parliament and its leadership.

MPs say the minister rides on the pride and powers of the executive which needs to be trimmed.

Namuganza with president Yoweri Museveni in 2021 / Courtesy Picture

On Monday, Parliament voted to censor Persis Namuganza from her position of minister of state for Lands and Urban Development.

A total of 356 MPs out of 529 voted in favor of the motion. Only 5 voted against while 3 MPs abstained.All cabinet and state ministers didn’t attend the session.

Namuganza’s woes started earlier in May 2022, when she allegedly undermined the adhoc committee investigating the give away of 142 acres of Land at Naguru. Namuganza is accused of declining to answer to committee questions and later had media interviews that undermined the powers of the committee, parliament and its leadership.

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On January 06th 2023, Parliament instituted an adhoc committee to investigate the conduct of Minister Namuganza.

The committee was led by Mwine Mpaka ( Mbarara City South Mp). Members on the committee include Wilfred Niwagaba (Shadown Attorney General), Betty Ethel Naluyima (Wakiso woman MP), Charles Bakabulindi (Workers Mp), Nancy Acoro (Lamwo Woman MP), Geoffrey Ekanya (Totoro North) and Mpindi Bumali ( Persons Living with Disabilities).

The committee used 15 days to investigate and come up with a report which was tabled before Parliament On Monday. The committee found Namuganza guilty of undermining parliamentary rules of procedures and its leadership and this censored.

After a resolution was passed by parliament, Deputy speaker Amos Tayebwa had to inform the president, Namuganza’s appointing authority within 24hrs.

A Question remains: Can the Executive Spare Namuganza?

On the fateful day, No minister attended plenary, a sign that the executive sides with Namuganza. It is clear, No minister can be sacked unless parliament gets approved from the President, the appointing authority. the Absence of all ministers in the sitting that censored Namuganza communicates the magnitude of favors she has from the executive.

In 2018, Namuganza was subjected to similar investigations by the then speaker Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga. Efforts to have her censored hit a dead end because it failed to attract approval from the appointing authority.

It’s a matter of time, Ugandans will soon know whether Namuganza is another untouchable or she’ll go down in history as a minister censored by parliament.

Gulu East Mp Fr. Charles Onen says Namuganza rides on the pride and powers of the executive which needs to be trimmed.

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