The election of new speaker has taken a strange twist with information trickling in suggesting a Religious affair being fronted. In this case, all negotiations are allegedly on how to handle the Anglicans who feel this is their seat having ‘lost out’ on other key appointments. For now, the Catholics through Anita Among seem to have an upper hand although Inspectors suggest that Jacob Oboth Oboth (protestant) has laid a very serious ambush for the same job. The other unconfirmed ambush is by Rebecca Kadaga.
But seasoned politicians like Ogenga Latigo feel the position of speaker should go to a politically mature person.
“Maturity, calmness, tolerance, quick mind, quick wit, sense of balance and ability to inspire, connect, embrace, motivate and generate consensus are great ideals for one to become a speaker” he says.
In this expose, we give you what our Inspectors have landed on.
Everytime a new parliament is elected, security reportedly conducts various intelligence reports. Among these according to Inspectors, is the strength of every religion among legislators, those with huge debts, those who are wealthy and above all, the generational status!
Our Inspectors suggest that for sometime now, Rubaga-based Catholic religion has always taken the largest percentage of legislators in parliament, followed by protestants and Moslems. The other religions like Seventh Day, Orthodox, Balokole and Yisa Masiya follow.
Even in this current parliament, the Catholics are said to be the majority and this explains why Catholics are many in key political appointments. Actually, looking at the government set up, the President is an Anglican (protestant), the vice president is a Catholic, Prime minister Catholic and Chief justice Catholic.
Under Jacob L’Okori Oulanyah, it was parliament that had an Anglican and deputized by a Catholic.
WHAT IS AT STAKE?
With Oulanyah now fallen, Inspectors suggest the president is facing a challenge on how to deal with the issue of religion that seems to be manifesting it’s face as the battle to replace Oulanyah takes shape. Oulanyah himself succeeded Rebecca Kadaga who was also a protestant.
When he came, he got a Catholic deputy speaker.
Inspectors explained that now, the Namirembe group where Oulanyah even went recently for thanks giving after his first operation is insisting that their position comes back.
“The Vice President, the Chief Justice and Prime Minister are all from Rubaga (Catholics). It’s only parliament the Anglicans have. If you have also a Catholic as speaker, are you sidelining the protestants? Namirembe is not about to lose out on this” says an Inspector quoting a senior legislator allied to Namirembe.
And so far, among rumored candidates, Jacob Oboth Oboth the state minister for defense is a protestant. He is battling a Catholic Anita Among who is the current deputy speaker in case he picks nomination forms. By press time, reports had indicated that Oboth had resigned his Ministerial position as state minister for defense to vie for speakership, although according to the guidance from Tanga Odoi, no one needed to resign before being endorsed by CEC.
The law requires that a minister or vice president can only stand for speakership after resignation from cabinet.
“How about long time experience at parliament and law? Our parliament should consider other possibles for the position of speaker. People like Oboth Oboth should in my view take one of the slots of speaker or deputy” he opines in one of the MPs’ group.
However, to Bernabas Tinkasimire, the tide now favors Anita Among unless Kadaga joins the race. But Kadaga has since chickened out.
“The tide favors the deputy speaker. We are still mourning and we shall not go into speakership race that leave us divided. This status can only change if Kadaga comes back” he says but Kadaga isn’t returning.
Indeed, Oboth is a former judicial officer before joining parliament where he rose through the ranks to become a minister recently.
Inspectors said being an Anglican, Oboth would present a consolation to the protestants who all along have been crying for more seats in government.
Inspectors added that Museveni during the time of installing Dr. Kazimba Mugalu as Arch Bishop of Uganda, came under pressure by the team from Canterbury over his ‘limited’ effort to prioritize issues of his own Anglican Religion.
“Ever since you came to power, how many protestant churches have you increased? How about our schools we left? What’s their performance now including your own Ntare school? Almost in every village, there are 10 balokole churches and ours are not increasing. What have we achieved?” Inspectors quoted the team as asking the president adding that the church also complained of not doing business with government through their companies.
Apparently, Gen. Museveni had allegedly complained to the Church that the Catholics were determined to take over power and were heavily backing Robert Kyagulanyi.
However, Inspectors said the team responded by saying that just like the protestants, even the Catholics weren’t happy with the way Balokole people were taking up almost every position in government.
“Maybe they (Catholics) have also realized that they are being sidelined and are trying to fight for their space? They are facing similar concerns like we are” an inspector added.
This was at the time the country was gearing up for elections and the situation became tense. The government tried to wash it’s face in the eyes of Canterbury by organizing a fabulous ceremony to install the head of the Anglican church in Uganda.
Inspectors said that for Gen. Museveni to have appointed more Catholics to government key positions and Protestants in the speakership, he was tactfully trying to answer the alleged concerns raised by the two traditional religious groups. This is how the post of VP, PM and CJ went to Catholics and Speaker went to Anglicans!
With the election for speakership now at hand, Inspectors suggest the issue of religion has now come into play and Museveni has to try all efforts to wade through this tide.
During the Edward Ssekandi reign as speaker, Kadaga was his deputy. The former was a Catholic and latter a protestant.
During Kadaga reign, both the speaker and deputy were protestants. And during Oulanyah reign, he was a protestant while his deputy is a Catholic. So far, two formidable names for speakership including Anita Among (Catholic) and Jacob Oboth Oboth (protestant) are flying in the air. Oboth resignation however, has been received with shock by many who now opine that he’s destined to be a full speaker or deputy speaker.
“Like it or not, Oboth is now a Rt. Honorable. Museveni must have cleared him for one of the two positions. His coming speaks volumes and let no one think he hasn’t been cleared” an inspector said.
Yesterday, we reported here that there was a proposal for defense to release one of their own preferably Gen. James Mugira or Gen. David Muhoozi (both army MPs) to tussle it out for the position of speaker. As it turns out, the minister for defense himself is coming in and it’s an indication that security has interest in the goings-on of parliament.
By press time, there was also rumor that Kadaga camp had resolved that she returns but she turned reportedly down the request. But as at 12pm, the NRM EC boss Tanga Odoi said only Anita had picked forms for speakership.
WHY OBOTH OBOTH?
Besides his vast experience in issues of law, he was the chairperson of the rules committee endlessly. He hails from Bukedi sub region. His region according to the calculation can connect well the whole of eastern Uganda, Lango, Acholi and West Nile. He also answers the claims of gender consideration for a man to become either speaker or deputy.
NRM CEC TO DECIDE
In 2016, Jacob L’Okori Oulanyah had laid an ambush against his former boss and nemesis Rebecca Kadaga. He abandoned his position of deputy speaker and went to Kyaddondo to pick nomination forms for speakership.
“Oh, all my troops are here. I like you guys. You’re doing a great job. I must be a speaker this time and I mean it” he told scribes and MPs who waited for him to pick forms. Unfortunately for him, he did his calculations without having read Museveni’s lips to know his thoughts. Immediately, Gen. Museveni summoned the NRM CEC and Oulanyah was given express orders to either return to his former position as deputy speaker or he loses out completely.
Left with no option, the man from Omoro painfully agreed and thats how the game ended.
For Museveni to have ordered for status quo to prevail, it was premised on a statement where Kadaga claimed that she too needed to complete her 10years like it was done to her former boss Edward Ssekandi. At that time, she looked very stressed that Museveni feared for the worst to come if he allowed Oulanyah to pile more misery on her.
“I don’t want to be accused of killing a speaker. Me, the son of Kaguta? Not at all. Let status quo prevail” he allegedly (then) told CEC and thats how it happened. The following day, Oulanyah and Kadaga went to Entebbe and were told to pose for photos to symbolize reconciliation.
With Anita Among and Jacob Oboth Oboth now ready to (STRICTLY) be speaker, will Museveni and his CEC agree to their candidacy or one of them will be deputy speaker? The election is for Friday.
Watch the space!