Different political figures and legal experts have conflicting opinions on the government’s suggested initiative to establish the role of Assistant Deputy Speaker of Parliament. Some believe it would ensure the smooth functioning of parliamentary sessions, while others argue that it would be a misuse of public funds.
Despite the ongoing disagreement between the government and the opposition regarding the delay in presenting a report on missing persons, the government intends to modify laws to include the position of assistant deputy speaker of Parliament. Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Norbert Mao disclosed this information in response to inquiries from lawmakers.
According to internal sources, the assistant deputy speaker would handle less critical parliamentary matters, such as discussing motions that may need committee review and managing non-statutory house affairs.
Former Parliamentary Commissioner Emmanuel Dombo sees the proposal as a solution used in previous parliaments during the absence of key officials due to international travel or domestic issues. However, National Unity Platform (NUP) Secretary General Lewis Rubongoya and lawyer George Constitutional Musisi doubt whether the proposal will foster unity and meaningful debates, given the government’s vested interest in the Parliament.
Dombo encourages the opposition to reconcile with the government to secure this position. The proposal arises as Speaker Anita Among takes 60 days of maternity leave, leaving Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa as the sole available authority. Any potential challenge could result in a parliamentary deadlock, as current regulations only allow for the Speaker and Deputy Speaker.