The Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, has commended MPs for working as a team and remaining united in spite of their political differences.
“The fact that a number of us are here, standing as one and enjoying each other’s company, is testimony enough that in spite of our political differences, we remain a united front at the end of the day,” said Kadaga, who was speaking during the 2017 end of year party for MPs. The party was held at the Parliament on Thursday, 21st December 2017.
“We are all working for the good of our country. That is paramount,” added the Speaker.
Kadaga applauded Parliament for working as an institution towards the attainment of the set objectives in the National Development Plan among which include; strengthening the institutional capacity of Parliament to independently undertake her constitutional mandate effectively and efficiently, improving citizen participation and contribution in promoting rule of law, transparency and accountability. Parliament further worked towards ensuring provision of services to achieve equitable and sustainable development and strengthening collaboration and networking amongst development institutions.
The Speaker noted that the 10th Parliament had enacted 17 government bills and 4 private members’ bills were introduced and processed.
She however observed that Parliament expected some bills from government but they were not presented.
“I want to ask government to present the bills they said they would during the State of the Nation Address,” said the Speaker.
She outlined Parliament’s performance during the year, including adopting 57 Ministerial Policy statements and 32 Reports; and 359 questions asked during the Prime Minister’s Time.
The Speaker added that Parliament was able to ratify two treaties which include; the Agreement for the establishment of the East African Standby Force and the East African Community Protocol on Cooperation in Defense Affairs.
She also highlighted the ability of Parliament to engage Ugandans and educate them about Parliament through the Parliamentary Week.
“We were able to bring Ugandans here, we are happy that we held the Parliamentary Week,” said Kadaga.
She also noted the ground breaking for the new Parliament Chamber as one of the most significant achievements of the year. The block will have a Chamber, offices and other amenities, envisioned to give MPs and staff a modern comfortable and conducive work environment.
Kadaga said that the Parliamentary Commission recently recruited 70 new staff who will help further facilitate MPs do their work.
She expressed optimism in the New Year, adding that MPs will continue to fulfil their responsibilities as legislators and people’s representatives.
Kadaga reiterated that Parliament is an independent institution and called on MPs to continue persevering the sanctity and dignity of the institution and make people aspire to join Parliament.
Speaking on behalf of the Prime Minister, the Minster of State for Northern Uganda and Zombo district Woman MP, Hon. Grace Freedom Kwiyucwinyi, commended the Speaker for steering activities of Parliament well, and congratulated MPs for the achievements made.
Relatedly, Kakumiro district Woman MP Hon. Robinah Nabbanja who is also a Parliamentary Commissioner, applauded MPs for debating and passing the Constitution (Amendment) (No.2) Bill before the year closed. She also wished MPs a good festive season.
Also in attendance was the Vice President H.E Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi.