Thomas Tayebwa region the Position of Speaker
Thomas Tayebwa, the Government Chief Whip, has trashed demands by a section of legislators for Oulanyah's replacement to come from northern Uganda, saying the position cannot be compromised for any particular region. FILE PHOTO

Thomas Tayebwa, the government’s chief whip, has slammed the demands of a section of legislators to have a replacement for Oulanyah elected from northern Uganda and explained that no specific region can compromise the position.

Thomas Tayebwa, the Government Chief Whip, took aim at a section of legislators seeking to have a replacement for Oulanyah elected from northern Uganda, stating that the position can’t be compromised for any particular region.

Jacob Oulanyah who has been serving as the Speaker of the 11th Parliament died on Sunday in Seattle, United States. 

With plans to elect a replacement already in full gear, MPs from northern Uganda have planned to boycott the elections if someone from their region is not fronted for the position.

Speaking about this, however, the Government Chief Whip said it is inappropriate to ring face the position of the Speaker to one region

He said the late ‘Oulanyah’ was elected to the position on the basis of merit and not because he was from the above region.

“Oulanyah was not just a northerner, he was a nationalist and I think he would curse anyone who said, ring-face this position for northern Uganda,” Tayebwa said pointing to the fact that during the elections that brought the late into the Speakership office, very few from the northern region rallied their support for him.

“His biggest support was from other regions. I have seen people who are shedding even crocodile tears, it is very unfortunate. These are voices of doom, and they should be condemned. We are nationalists. We know they are mourning, but that is not how you should mourn,” Tayebwa pointed out.

“It means that when His Excellency goes, westerners will demand to ring-fence the position of President for westerners. I urge colleagues that if your argument is that someone should be voted because he is from northern Uganda, go to hell,” he added.

This comes at a time when the National Resistance Movement Central Executive Committee (CEC) Wednesday endorsed Bukedea Woman MP Anita Among as the party flag bearer in the forthcoming speakership race.

“Having considered the 12 names of members who had expressed interest in the position of Speaker of the 11th Parliament and having considered the withdrawal of candidature of Jane Ruth Aceng and that having interacted with all candidates except Hon. Sarah Opendi who did not attend the interaction, 

CEC having noted that the NRM party has established practice and culture of elevating the Deputy Speaker to the position of Speaker even when there has not been any disruption and now, even more, when there is an emergency,

Hereby, recommends to the NRM Parliamentary Caucus the Rt. “HON Anita Among Annet for endorsement as the NRM candidate for the position of Speaker of Parliament of Uganda,” the announcement read in full.

This now means Anita Among being the party flag bearer will finally be endorsed by NRM parliamentary caucus on Thursday in a bid to face off with any other candidates for the seat of the speaker on Friday, in a session chaired by Chief Justice.