Government’s proposal to change modus operandi for election of Kampala Lord Mayor from universal adult suffrage to an electoral college of councilors has collapsed.
MPs on the Presidential Affairs Committee rejected the proposal, warning that the move would create anarchy in already politically porous Kampala.
Thee Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) Amendment Bill 2015 had provided for election of Lord Mayor among the councilors other than have the political head directly elected by voters in Kampala.
However, Jesca Ababiku, Chairperson Presidential Affairs Committee while tabling the report on the Bill informed Parliament that the committee had rejected the said proposal as well as suggestion to make the Minister of Kampala as political head instead of Lord Mayor, saying the position of political head is useless because it doesn’t come with functions.
During yesterday’s plenary sitting, a number of MPs questioned the motive behind denying voters in Kampala rights to vote their own mayor yet world over, all cities vote their own mayors.
Aruu County MP, Odonga Otto accused the framers of the proposal of being agents of anarchy.
“This is the person who doesn’t want us to have peace in the country. Why would town like Pader elect a mayor and city like Kampala not have mayor elected by adult suffrage. Kampala should be no exception. We have to take position of the committee let the people of Kampala elect the person who they want. There is no short cut,” Otto said.
Nandala Mafabi (Budadiri East) wondered why Government was making legislations in piecemeal instead of making an omnibus Act for all cities and questioned if all the newly created cities will have their own Acts.
“I don’t know what the motive of the bill was? If you look at the bill, it is just ill motive. If the town council can have its mayor elected, what about Kampala? Do these people who make these laws sit in heaven? Maybe some people want to become councilors that is why they want this bill. I am yet to understand what motive of the bill,” said Mafabi.
He also cautioned fellow law makers against making laws with eyes aiming at one individual asking how sure the law won’t catch up with them and instead focus on making a law that would stand the test of times.
Moses Kasibante also weighed in submitting that if a small village in Rubaga has a political head, how about a capital city? He also questioned what is special for KCCA to have a Minister yet Uganda has over 100 Authorities but none has a Minister with calls to have KCCA revert back to Local Government, saying the creation of a Minister has created confusion at City Hall.
Bena Namugwanya, Minister Of State for KCCA informed Parliament that although the Bill had proposed setting up a Metropolitan Physical Planning Authority, the idea was dropped and instead set up a department in the Ministry of Kampala to deal with physical planning to encompass all the districts in the metropolitan area.