The Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) has appealed to President Yoweri Museveni to ensure that the ongoing conflict between the three arms of government over funding for COVID-19 activities is resolved amicably.
The call was made during the National Prayers held at State House, Entebbe on Saturday afternoon. The prayers, led by the Interreligious Council of Uganda were also attended by President Yoweri Museveni, First Lady Janet Museveni, Ministers, religious leaders, Members of Parliament, among others.
The Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramathan Mubaje, in his capacity as the Chairman of the council of presidents said that an observation had been made by the religious leaders and they were experiencing discomfort from the current tension between the Executive, the Judiciary and the Legislature.
Describing the development as alarming, Sheikh Mubaje called upon the three parties to ceasefire.
He added that the County has a more crucial battle of fighting COVID-19 which requires a concerted effort from everyone and therefore a need for the three arms to focus on it.
The country has for the past few weeks witnessed bitter exchanges between the three arms of government stemming from the controversial appropriation of 10 billion Shilling to facilitate activities by Member of Parliament in the fight against COVID-19. Each MP received 20 million Shillings.
President Yoweri Museveni said that by taking the money, the legislators had fallen into a trap. He condemned Parliament for seeking to divert Ugandans from the current war against coronavirus by picking the money, an act he said was immoral.
A day after the president’s statement, a High Court order directed all Members of Parliament to refund monies deposited on their personal accounts. The decision by Justice Michael Elubu was in response to a petition by Ntungamo Municipality Member of Parliament Gerald Karuhanga contesting the manner in which parliament allocated the said money.
But the sentiments from the President and the judiciary met strong opposition from the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga who interpreted it as a direct attack on the legislature. Parliament has since passed a resolution condemning statements by President Museveni about the funds and demanded an apology from the Executive.