June 10, 2013

Rebel MP Defends His Stay in Parliament

Wilfred Niwagaba, the Ndorwa East legislator has defended his stay in parliament despite the fact that he was expelled by his party for alleged indiscipline.
Wilfred Nuwagaba (R) with former DP president Ssebana Kizito
Wilfred Niwagaba (R) with former DP president Ssebana Kizito

In March this year, the NRM Central Executive Committee chaired by President Yoweri expelled four legislators for alleged indiscipline and breach of the party code of conduct. They are Wilfred Niwagaba, Ndorwa East MP, Barnabas Tinkasimire, Buyaga West, Muhammad Nsereko, Kampala Central and Theodore Ssekikubo, Lyemiyaga County. Following the expulsion of the MPs, Amama Mbabazi, the NRM secretary general wrote to Rebecca Kadaga, the speaker of parliament to eject them.However, in her ruling Kadaga said there was no ground for expelling the MPs. As a result, NRM through its lawyers John Mary Mugisha, Chris Bakiza and Twinobusingye Severino filed a petition before the constitutional court seeking the expulsion of the MPs from parliament. Court ordered the affected legislators to defend themselves against the application. Through his lawyers from Alaka and Company advocates, Niwagaba contends that he is still an ardent NRM supporter, its good objectives and vision.

He argues that despite the fact that, he was sponsored by NRM in the 2011 elections, he does not represent the party interests because he was voted overwhelmingly by the Ndorwa East electorate, whom he represents regardless of their political affiliations. Niwagaba also argues that since his election, he has never missed any parliamentary session without the speaker’s authorization, never defected from the NRM or been appointed to any public office that would warrant his removal from parliament.

He asks court to throw out the NRM petition with costs saying it is an abuse to their rights as MPs. Niwagaba becomes the second MP to file his defense after Barnabas Tinkasimire, the Buyaga West file his defense last week.

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