KAMPALA, Dec 20 — Ugandan legislator Daniel Kidega has been named the new Speaker of the East African Legislative Assembly, replacing Margaret Zziwa.
The position fell vacant mid-this week after the regional parliament impeached Zziwa over alleged impunity, incompetence, intimidation of members, among other reasons.
Kidega, an NRM politician, had to beat off interests by three other hopefuls, who include Mike Kennedy Sebalu (NRM), Chris Okumu Opoka (UPC) and Suzan Nakawuki (Independent). He at the end of the process was nominated unopposed.
In his new post, Kidega will be responsible for directing all activities of the House and its Committees.
As Speaker, he will also preside over the proceedings of the regional legislative body under the EALA Rules of Procedure.
Following Wednesday’s removal of Zziwa from office, Uganda was given 48 hours to fill the position, a demand that was duly fulfilled on Friday.
The former Speaker was in Uganda at the time of the censure, which saw 36 out of 39 members vote in favour of her impeachment. Two members voted against the move while one abstained.
Zziwa had served in that postion for three-and-a-half years.
Her impeachment means she remains an ordinary MP until 2017, when the term of the current assembly expires. Despite this repercussion, one of her lawyers, Jet Tumwebaze, has said they will challenge the verdict.
Generally, the functions of the Speaker, according to the EALA website, include opening, suspending and closing sitting; ensuring observance of the EALA Rules of Procedure;
maintaining order in the House; calling upon members to participate in the proceedings; closing debates; putting matters to vote and announcing the results of votes, and
refering to Committees any business that concern them.
SOURCE: NEW VISION