Kampala City Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has asked Members of Parliament not to be lured into a trap by passing the Political Parties and Organisations (Conduct of Meetings and Elections) Regulations 2020.
Lukwago said on Friday that the regulations are aimed at denying democracy as well as giving a lot of powers to a small group of people in political party. He says this will give birth to dictatorial tendencies within political parties.
On Thursday, the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Prof Ephraim Kamuntu tabled regulations that will restrict political party activities and also proposed unique methods for the election of party officials in light of the Covid19 pandemic.
The regulations which they termed as ‘Political Parties and Organisations (Conduct of Meetings and Elections) Regulations 2020’ are to enable a political party or organisation to elect leaders and sponsor candidates for nomination for general elections without compromising the health and safety of its members or the public.
In the regulations, Kamuntu said that Political parties leadership can hold meeting using zoom, holding elections by lining up or using electoral colleges. he also stated that holders of political party offices other than the Executive Committee of political parties will have their terms extended by six months at a time, should the Covid19 pandemic persist beyond the time prescribed.
However, Lukwago said that the regulations are against the Political Parties and Organisations Act 2005. He said that if elections are to be conducted let the government follow what the law says but not regulations.
“You can not just come up with something called guidelines that you are going to change the entire constitution because what is in the guidelines are contrary to what is in the law which was passed by the parliament. So this is wrong and I would kindly ask the Parliament to just quash it don’t waste time on it,” Lukwago said.
According to Lukwago the preparation of an election is in the constitution. Therefore, any move to change any arrangement, you must change the entire law in the constitution.
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