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July 12, 2024
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NUP Orders Former LoP Mathias Mpuuga to Resign After Pocketing Shs500m Cash Reward
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Mpuuga’s Shs500M Parliament ‘Service Award’ Illegal-Uganda Law Society

The Uganda Law Society has described as illegal the Shs500M Service Award bonanza Parliament awarded to Mathias Mpuuga (Nyendo-Mukungwe Division) for the services he rendered as Leader of Opposition.

In a statement authored by Bernard Oundo, President, Uganda law Society, the lawyers hinged their opinion on Article 85(1) of Uganda’s 1995 Constitution that empowers Parliament to determine the emoluments including gratuity, pension and allowances of MPs, with Oundo noting however that in accordance with Article 93, the introduction of any new emoluments of upward alteration of existing ones must be by a way of a Bill or motion introduced in Parliament on behalf of the Government that is to say the Executive arm upon which Parliament becomes empowered to consider the same and determine such emoluments.

Oundo argued, “Therefore, to the extent that there was no Bill or motion presented on behalf of the Executive in relation to the impugned “Service Award” emoluments they constitute an illegal charge on the Consolidated Fund of Uganda and ought to be thoroughly investigated.”

The Uganda Law Society also cited a similar case adjudicated upon by the Supreme Court that confirmed the above position in a case between Parliamentary Commission vs Mwesigye Wilson, Constitutional Appeal No.8 of 2016, wherein it determined that the emoluments of MPs can only be altered other than by reduction upon a Bill or motion introduced on behalf of the Executive and the Court further held that the Parliamentary Commission is bound by this procedure of determination of emoluments of Members of Parliament.

Oundo added, “Uganda Law Society thus urges Parliament to abide by the Constitutional and statutory laws governing the determination of their emoluments including salaries, pension and other benefits and to lead by example in demonstrating proper and economical use of public funds.”

The Uganda Law Society also cautioned that in order for Government to remedy the perennial problem of payment disparities and conflicts of interest in the determination of the emoluments of MPs, there is need for Government to create an independent Salaries and Renumeration Commission to determine the renumeration of all Government employees and officials including MPs, which would necessitate constitutionals as well as statutory amendments but is necessary to deal with the problem and provide an inclusive and lasting solution.

“Uganda Law Society calls upon the Government and all public servants uphold the principles of accountability, transparency and adherence to the rule of law in all matters related to the administration of public funds and renumeration of public officials to create and maintain public trust and ensure the responsible use of taxpayers money,” added Oundo.

Source: Business Focus

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