By Joanita Mbabazi
The controversial age limit bill that was passed by legislators on the 20th/12/2017 amidst bitter exchange of words finally has been assented by the President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
The Constitution Amendment Bill No.2 of 2017 has become a law effective from now hence forth.
In a letter to the Clerk to Parliament, the President signified his assent to the Bill on Wednesday, 27 December 2017.
The Act prescribes 18 years as the age for prospective presidential candidates, from the 35 previously prescribed by the old legal regime.
The upper age limit for presidential candidates has also been removed, together with that of Local Councils Chairpersons.
Equally, Parliament’s term have been extended from five to seven years, beginning with the 10th Parliament.
Local Councils’ terms are also extended from five to seven years, beginning with the current tenure.
General elections for Local Councils and Parliament will now be held in 2023, from the 2021 envisaged in the pre-existing legal order.
Mr Chris Obore, Parliament’s Director Communication and Public Affairs says unlike the Biotechnology and Biosafety Bill 2017, which the President reverted to Parliament for reconsideration, the Constitution Amendment Bill has wholly been assented to.
In his New Year address, the President applauded the 317 MPs who voted in favour of the Bill.
The president asserted that they did a commendable job that will save this country from bad leadership.
According to section 13(1) of the Parliaments of Uganda, every Act shall be published by the government printer as soon as possible after the president’s assent has been signified and so the age limit bill is going to be published as it has finally been assented by his excellency.
However, a section of MPs opposed to the Bill have, threatened to take legal action, arguing that sections of the Act are unconstitutional like extending their tenure in parliament.
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