The campaign for the leadership of the 11th Parliament is getting ugly as the current Speaker, Rebecca Kadaga, and her deputy, Jacob Oulanyah trade counter-accusations as they seek to win over the MPs’ support ahead of the May 20, 2021 Speaker elections.
The two senior members of the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) central executive committee (CEC) have moved the campaign away from the issues to a show of loyalty to the ruling establishment.
On Wednesday, Kadaga accused Oulanyah of running away from the 2017 controversial constitutional amendment that deleted the age limit clause from the Constitution which stood as the only legal hurdle against the extension of President Yoweri Museveni’s hold onto state power.
“There are some liars in NRM who say I don’t like the Movement. For those who were in Parliament, you saw how tense the situation was during the age limit (debate). I was in America and then passed through London to accompany the Teso people because their cultural leader was visiting. My deputy called me saying there was something he couldn’t handle…I came straight into fire. The chairs were flying. My deputy ran away; out of the country, ” Kadaga said during the launch of her campaigns on Wednesday.
After receiving the Covid-19 jab at Parliament, Oulanyah hit back at Kadaga, telling journalists that her statements were lies, saying that he never ran away from the age limit debate since he has never run away from anything.
Oulanyah said that while his rival had officially launched her campaigns, he will wait for the NRM process that he hopes will solve the matter more amicably.
“When they ask us to express interest in whatever office we intend to vie for…that is when I will go and express my interest. For now, there is no activity; I don’t even know what is going on. The previous election process I was set to win, this one, when it comes I will win big,” he said.
He also doubted that some 300 MPs have already expressed support for Kadaga.
‘So I hear, but you see…a vote is a vote, we will wait for the vote. Three hundred! And you are still campaigning? If you have three hundred you don’t campaign,” he said.
Regarding caucuses in parliament that have started showing support for different candidates, Oulanyah said that this is not a new strategy and that all he is waiting for is his party’s process before he can present himself and speak about his campaign strategy.