Members Split Over Amending Tooro Kingdom Constitution

2076 Views Fort Portal, Uganda

In short
The disagreements are on Article 15. In the 1999 constitution, the article called for the removal of the King on medical grounds, misconduct or misbehaviour. It also gave powers to members of the ruling clan, the Babiito, in consultation with the kingdom parliament to appoint a successor. In the amended version of the constitution, however, the section was scrapped, drawing mixed reactions.

Disagreements have emerged among members of the committee appointed to scrutinise the amended Tooro Kingdom constitution.

Last week, Princess Elizabeth Bagaya presented to the Kingdom Parliament, the Orukurato, copies of the amended constitution.  Bagaya headed the committee by Omukama Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV in 2012 to review the kingdom constitution.

Members of the Kingdom Parliament then appointed a seven-member committee to scrutinise amendments.

Uganda Radio Network has however learnt that disagreements have since emerged among the members about one of the articles that was removed.  

The disagreements are on Article 15.  In the 1999 constitution, the article called for the removal of the King on medical grounds, misconduct or misbehaviour.  It also gave powers to members of the ruling clan, the Babiito, in consultation with the kingdom parliament to appoint a successor.

In the amended version of the constitution, however, the section was scrapped, drawing mixed reactions. 

A member of the committee who preferred anonymity says that while some members want the article reinstated, others are in favour of the removal. The source says that those who want the article restored argue that in case the King falls sick and is unable to perform his roles, there could be a power vacuum which could lead to fights for the throne. 

According to the source, some of the members who are in favour of the amendment argued that replacing the King should only be after he has passed away. 

The source adds that the members resolved to defer the matter to the next meeting after consultation with the kingdom's legal department. 

Silver Kasoro, the chairperson of the committee, when contacted, declined to disclose the details of the meeting. He however says that members will meet and harmonise some of the contentious provisions in the amended constitution. 

George Muhenda, a former member of the Kingdom Parliament, says that it was wrong to remove the provision, because it will help check the powers of the King.

//Cue in: "Constitution is conflicting…
Cue out: "…remove powers."//

The committee will present its findings to the Kingdom Parliament in two months' time.

 

About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.