David Bahati, the state minister of Finance for Planning has asked Ugandans to “respect the decision” of Members of Parliament who approved the removal of the presidential age limit.
On that day, a total of 317 MPs voted in favour of the motion to lift the upper age limit of 75 years while 97 members voted against. Two members abstained from the vote.
The lawmakers also voted in favour of a motion to extend their term in office from 5 years to 7 years. The bill is now awaiting a signature by the president to be become a law.
Since then, a lot of voters have stood up against the move, with some petitioning authorities to have their MPs recalled from parliament.
Two citizens have also showed their intentions of blocking the president from signing the bill by filing suits against amendment of the constitution.
But according to Bahati, who is also Ndorwa West MP, the decision of the MPs should be “respected” and the public should move on “to developmental work” instead of getting fixated on the bill.
He argues that by sending them to parliament, voters should have trusted their representatives to make the right decisions.
It should, however, be noted that different polls showed that, on consultations, the public reflected overwhelming opposition of removal of the presidential age limit – even in the constituency where Bahati comes from.
Bahati made the remarks on Thursday while speaking at the Thanksgiving of John Ndyomugyenyi, the chairman Uganda Taxi Operators’ Drivers Association (UTODA) at All Saints Church — Kabale municipality.
To defend his assertions, Bahati said that Uganda deserves better leaders, but the article was in the way of capable, visionary and great leaders like President Museveni whom he says is taking the country forward in development.
The constitution amendment is good for the state and steady progress, he said, adding: “President Museveni has excelled beyond reasonable doubt thereby should be given an opportunity to finalize the good work he started.”
Bishop Enock Kayeye, the Emeritus Bishop of North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo — speaking at the same event — asked Ugandans now to seek for divine intervention, saying that with God no violence will happen in the country.
David Bahati concluded his speech rallying all Ugandans, whether pro or anti age limit amendment — to work together and unite for the development of the country.
The function was attended by the Minister of Public Service Wilson Muruli Mukasa, senior presidential advisor Stephen Bamwanga, Major General. Gervase Mugyenyi, the deputy Airforce Commander among others.