Fourth Session Opens: Speaker Among commends MPs’ performance

Parliament has significantly reduced the turn-around time of House business through timely consideration of business, guided by the principles of responsiveness, efficiency and effectiveness.

Speaker Anita Among, said that Parliament has efficiently considered bills, motions, reports and approvals of presidential appointees, leading to a tremendous improvement in the quality of legislative output.

AUDIO: Speaker Anita Among

“To this end, Parliament held 87 sittings during which five oaths were administered to five new Members of Parliament. We passed 47 Bills, 23 of which were in furtherance of the government programme on rationalisation. We passed 42 resolutions and adopted 62 reports,” said Among in her remarks at the State-of-the-Nation Address (SONA) at the Kololo Ceremonial Grounds in Kampala.

The SONA is also the first sitting of a new session of Parliament and in essence, this fourth session is the second last year of the 11th Parliament. There are five sessions of Parliament with each, stretching a year.

To ensure adequate financing for government expenditure priorities for Financial Year 2024/2025,, the Speaker noted that Parliament passed tax and revenue bills in line with the Constitution and the Public Finance Management Act, 2015.

The House also granted leave to five MPs to introduce Private Members’ bills, considered 60 ministerial statements and five statements from the Leader of the Opposition, and considered eight petitions from the public.

AUDIO: Speaker Anita Among

“Furthermore, Your Excellency, the Parliamentary Commission successfully organised a validation workshop for a mid-term review strategic plan for Fiscal Year 2020/2021 to 2024/2025. This reaffirms our commitment to good governance and sustainable development,” Among said.

The Speaker alluded to the successful hosting of the Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers (CSPOC) and the Non Aligned Movement (NAM) and G77 and China Conference events in January 2024.

“Our efforts in organising such meaningful and successful conferences were not in vain, as they had a significant multiplier effect on the local economy and left a lasting impression on the hearts of all the participants that Uganda is the Pearl of Africa,” said Among.

President commended for support to the Legislature
The Speaker commended the support rendered by President Museveni to the Legislature, terming it as consistent and reliable which has promoted the country’s national values and aspirations of the population.

AUDIO: Speaker Anita Among

“The President has done a lot for Parliament. The development and remarkable growth of the Eleventh Parliament is a testimony of the President’s inspirational leadership and unwavering support towards the Legislature and Judiciary,” Among said.

She pledged Parliament’s continued support to the realisation of President Museveni’s vision for the prosperity of Uganda.

AUDIO: Speaker Anita Among

“We are aware that the call for leadership sometimes comes with the risk of being misunderstood, criticised, opposed, sanctioned or even rejected. We owe it to our society to stand from and the good Lord will always be with us on that,” she said.

The Speaker described the SONA as an opportunity to reflect on the country’s achievements in the previous year, the inherent challenges, and government’s legislative agenda for the subsequent session.

“The sitting is also to remind us that the five-year tenure of the Eleventh Parliament is now at its second last year. Let us renew our solemn commitment to the creation of a society that works for the good and dignity of our people,” Among said.

She also invited the President to grace the first of Parliament’s regional sittings, which will be held at Kaunda Grounds in Gulu City in August.

AUDIO: Speaker Anita Among

“Parliament is a people-centred legislature which implies that the common Ugandan is at the centre of parliamentary processes and decisions. Parliament will hold regular outreach sittings that will cover the four traditional regions in Uganda,” the Speaker said.