MPs Want Ratification of Legislative Pan African Parliament Expedited

L-R: MPs Hanifa Kawooya, Jacklin Amongin, Felix Okot Ogong and Veronica Babirye addressing journalists at Parliament.

Members of Parliament sitting on the Pan African Parliament (PAP) are set to petition the Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament to summon the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sam Kutesa on the delayed of ratification of a legislative PAP.

In 2016, African Union Member states signed the amended the 2014 Malabo Protocol granting full legislative powers to the Pan African Parliament.

So far, 13 countries have ratified the amended Malabo Protocol and have since created independent Pan African Parliaments in their countries.

Legislators that include; Hanifah Kawooya, Felix Okot Ogong, Veronica Babirye and Jackeline Amongin noted on Thursday that it is so shaming that Uganda with a President who is well known as a Pan Africanist has to date not ratified to the Protocol.

“We are currently just an advisory Parliament whose advice can either be taken in by the African Union or member countries,” Amongin said.

On her part, Ssembabule district woman MP, Hanifah Kawooya said that there is a lot of multi-tasking on the PAP legislators who must represent Ugandans in PAP, their electorate in Uganda as well as serving on the different committees.

Similarly, MP Okot Ogong appealed to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sam Kutesa to spearhead the process of ratification since President Yoweri Museveni recently expressed readiness to have the Protocol ratified.

“We have met the President several times and he is keen about the matter. He has already directed the Minister of Foreign Affairs to prepare and submit to Cabinet so that Uganda ratifies. It is now up to the Minister to act. We call upon him to act on the directive of the President,” Okot said.

Kawooya observed that Members are ready to boycott the next PAP sitting in March in case there are no relevant steps taken to have the Protocol ratified by government.

“We must force the Minister of Foreign Affairs to explain why there has been such a delay yet the President issued orders. We are not going back to the next sitting in March without Uganda being on the list of those that have ratified the Protocol,” she said.

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