Suspension of speaker Zziwa bad for Uganda’s image

It is no longer news that our very own, Margaret Nantongo Zziwa, the first woman Speaker for the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA), is on suspension for 21 days, allegedly for incompetence and disrespectful conduct to members of the Assembly.

In accordance with the East African Community Protocol that establishes EALA, speakership is rotational among partner states. As such, Ms Zziwa virtually represents Uganda and what happens to her translates into making or damaging Uganda’s reputation.

For more than six months, we have watched the impasse at EALA and apparently those that are supposed to take action against our very own EALA MPs who originated the debate that has culminated into Uganda’s suspension are quiet.

The inaction is certainly portraying Uganda in very bad light. As usual, Uganda is always reactive. We can now expect action when the damage has already been done!

Key lesson for Uganda is the need to re-engineer our international relations strategy so that this form of embarrassment is avoided.

Remembering very well that even at the election of Ms Zziwa, there was the incident of flowers being thrown at our own then minister for EAC Affairs, Eria Kategeya: We ought to have put our house in order to avoid typical personal ambitions overshadowing national interests!

Richard Mubiru,

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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