Members of Parliament on Tuesday slammed Arua Municipality Member of Parliament (MP), Col. Ibrahim Abiriga over his campaign aimed at lifting the presidential age limit.
An exchange ensued during a joint committee of Defense and ICT chaired by the latter’s chairperson, Annet Nyakecho while interfacing the Minister of Security and other agencies over the status of SIM Card registration whose deadline is at the end of August.
In his submission, Abiriga expressed support to maintaining the set deadline of registration so as to strengthen security in the country.
When Buyaga West County MP, Barnabas Tinkasimire got the opportunity to speak, he attacked Abiriga accusing him of advocating for stay of SIM card registration yet he on the other hand advocates for lifting of the presidential age limit.
“Many people haven’t registered not by their fault but due to reasons beyond their control; I find the submissions by Abiriga quiet unbecoming, he is the same person advocating for stay of the SIM card registration deadline yet he is advocating for lifting of the age limit,” Tinkasimire said.
Other legislators rose up putting Tinkasimire on order urging that his submissions and accusations against Abiriga are diversionary and outrageous.
In the uproar, Abiriga and Tinkasimire, who were seated next to each other, began pointing at each other and exchanging bitterly almost punching each other.
Kawempe South MP, Mubaraka Munyagwa joined in, and urged Abiriga to drop the campaign since it is not in the interest of Ugandans.
Abiriga was saved by Ntoroko MP, Gerald Rwemulikya who put Tinkasimire to order noting that every Ugandan has a right to an opinion and Abiriga should therefore be left free and being accused.
“Your opinion however should be reasonable, it should reflect adult age,” Tinkasimire responded.
He told the committee chairperson who had ruled him out of order that she should always inform them prior if Abiriga is to attend the committee meeting with them.
“I don’t want to meet this man in my committee; I wasn’t aware we were going to meet with people like Abiriga,” Tinkasimire noted.
At this time, the committee Chairperson, Nyakecho informed Tinkasimire that Abiriga is a member of the Defence Committee and has a right as a legislator to attend any committee sitting as an ex-officio urging him to stop insulting Abiriga over his personal opinions.