President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s former ally Hon Miria Matembe has said that article 102 was included in the constitution to avoid reoccurrence of bloodshed in transitioning of power.
Uganda has never witnesses a peaceful transfer of power.
Matembe, a former minister of ethics and integrity in Museveni’s government is among the leaders who participated in the making of 1995 constitution during the Constituency Assembly (CA).
The same constitution was amended in 2005 to scrap off presidential term limits which worked in Museveni’s favour.
On Monday the nation was awash with reports that the age limit bill had been gazetted, meaning that it could be ready to be submitted in Parliament for review.
The development has drawn ire among a section of Ugandans especially opposition groups and civil society organisations who are opposed to the removal of age limit saying it guarantees Museveni’s life presidency.
Matembe told BBC radio that she was so saddened that this was happening in her country.
“As one of the people who made Uganda’s constitution, there were two vital laws that we included therein,” she said.
These were a limit on the presidential terms and a limit on presidential age.
“The reason we did this was to avoid a reoccurrence of bloodshed and coups that were previously a norm in the country. As of now, term limits were removed. Now, even the presidential age limit is to be removed, I feel so pained,” she added.
Matembe was however, reminded that the same makers of 1995 constitution provided for a review.
“I am not against constitutional review but what I am against is the change of a constitution just for the sake of benefitting a single person. As president Museveni neared his last term, he changed the constitution to allow him contest for more terms. Now that he will be 76 in 2021 thus not eligible to contest, he wants to remove even the age limit,” Matembe responded.
The belligerent politician and human rights activist rejected the notion that Ugandans can decide to remove age limit or not, “Let me tell you, there is nothing like Ugandans deciding. In Uganda, all decisions are reached through massive bribery, intimidation etc.”
A lot more Ugandans have already ganged to oppose removal of age limit.
Activists and other opposition leaders have started issuing raising concerns through the media to physiologically prepare the masses to reject this constitutional amendment.
A political survey carried out last year by a renowned researcher Dr Patrick Wakida, it showed that 74 percent of Ugandans were against removal of age limit.
Museveni will in 2021 have clocked 76 years of age and therefore ineligible to contest for President.
For this vote to pass, Museveni need 2/3rds present sitting in parliament. This means 257 MPs must be in the house or it will be knocked out on technical grounds.
Of the 257 MPs present you need to pass the vote with a minimum 171. This clearly indicates that President Museveni already has the votes.