The Parliament of Uganda through the office of the Clerk has clarified on reports in the media alleging that the Civil Aviation Amendment Bill, 2017 was never passed.
The clarification follows a news article ran in The New Vision newspaper of Wednesday, 02 January 2019 with a title, ‘Legislators Reject Civil Aviation Bill’.
The article reported that the Bill had hit a snag in its processing after being rejected by MPs on the Committee of Physical Infrastructure.
“Although most of the MPs on the Committee on Physical Infrastructure called for withdrawal of the Bill, Parliament passed the proposed law (Bill) following a Minority Report, which recommended the approval on 12 December 2018,” the Clerk to Parliament wrote in a statement.
The Clerk noted that the impression created by the story carried in the New Vision is that the Bill was not passed by Parliament which is to the contrary.
“Indeed when the Chairperson of the Committee, Hon Kafeero Ssekitoleko presented the report to the plenary, most of the MPs in the committee wanted the Bill withdrawn, but three MPs led by Hon James Waluswaka presented a minority report which called for the processing of the Bill,” the Clerk added.
The Clerk noted that the minority view was supported by the rest of the legislators in the House who felt that there was need to have Bill passed.
The Bill’s objectives include; to widen the scope and application of the Civil Aviation Act, and establish an independent accident and investigations unit; provide an unhindered access to aerodromes and areas around.
It also seeks to help the country meet the requirements for the standards and recommended practices set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
Parliament in processing of the Bill also rejected the proposal to separate the regulation and operation functions of the Civil Aviation Authority which would see the creation of two agencies.
They argued that this would go against government’s plans to merge the entities.
“It is therefore, wrong to create an impression that the Bill was rejected,” said the Clerk to Parliament.