Members of Parliament have started the process to censure Security Minister General Elly Tumwine over contempt of Parliament.
This is after the house debated the committee report that pinned Gen Tumwine for frustrating investigations into torture of Ugandans by blocking MPs from accessing safe houses, blocking MPs from meeting the Internal Security Organisation Director Kaka Bagyenda and consistently undermining parliament.
Although the committee chairperson Janepher Egunyu Nantume recommended that Gen Tumwine be held accountable for frustrating their work, Muwanga Kivumbi, the Butambala MP moved a motion to amend the committee report to include the closure of the Safe Houses in the country, and that a vote of censure on Gen Tumwine is initiated.
Kivumbi moved under rule 56 of the Parliament’s rule of Procedure on oral notice.
The motion was seconded by several MPs including Workers MP Sam Lyomoki and Kilak South MP Gilbert Olanya.
Lyomoki also amended the report of the committee to include that the house had lost confidence in Tumwine, which was seconded by MPs.
The Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga asked the question that report be amended as proposed, and members voted to it, and also voted to adopt the report of the committee.
Article 118 of the constitution notes that Parliament may, by resolution supported by more than half of all members of Parliament, pass a vote of censure against a Minister on grounds of abuse of office or willful violation of the oath of allegiance or oath of office; misconduct or misbehaviour; incompetence and mismanagement while in office.
“Proceedings for censure of a Minister shall be initiated by a petition to the President through the Speaker signed by not less than one-third of all members of Parliament giving notice that they are dissatisfied with the conduct or performance of the Minister and intend to move a motion for a resolution of censure and setting out particulars of the grounds in support of the motion.”
According to the constitution, a motion for the resolution of censure shall not be debated until the expiry of thirty days after the petition was sent to the President. A Minister in respect of whom a vote of censure is debated is entitled during the debate to be heard in his or her defence.