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PARLIAMENT PLOTS TO SCRAP AGE LIMIT FOR CIVIL SERVANTS/JUDGES

Parliament of Uganda, backed by the executive, hasn’t given up plans to scrap age limit for civil servants and judges, a move Nakifuma MP Kafeero Sekitoleko had started upon sometime last year. Originally the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga had silenced the move insisting government should bring a comprehensive Bill for all the amendments they want occasioned on the Constitution.

However, the manner in which Magyezi was permitted to bring his private member’s bill to scrap age limit for the President has set precedence that as many MPs as practicably possible will be sponsoring such bills to amend the Constitution. Because it’s now permissible and easy as Magyezi has demonstrated, two West Nile MPs have been secretly facilitated and prompted to bring up a bill proposing to scrap age-related qualifications for civil service jobs whereby officials will now serve for life without any age restrictions.

Chief Justice Bart Katureebe seen here (L) in this recent photo with his right hand man Paul Gadenya the Chief Registrar

In the current setting, one is required to retire the moment they crop the mandatory retirement age which stands at 60, 65 and 70 years for the different positions.Whereas the Permanent Secretary must retire at 65 year, for some judiciary positions judges retire at 70 years as was the case with Justice Steven Kavuma, the end of whose controversial career saw many feel relieved and become more hopeful in a better judiciary. There are two ways through which one can retire; voluntary and mandatory retirement. For the judiciary whoever attains 60 can opt to be let retire and at 70 it becomes mandatory as Justice Kavuma’s experience has just illustrated. We can reliably reveal that the two West Nile MPs have already been holding meetings with seasoned civil servants to draft water tight documents on which their bill will be anchored and justified.

“It must sound very persuasive and sophisticated to pass the test of time and as you know many of these MPs are mediocres who can’t do things on their own. This is why a document has been quietly going for the seasoned trusted civil servants to make input and please don’t be surprised if you see a man like Justice Bart Katureebe serve as CJ for life and many others. That is where we are heading as a country,” a top government official privy to the move told Mulengera news.

The same official, however, expressed fear that the young people might stage an uprising as the impending bill will ferment feelings of hopelessness and lead to chaos in future. “This will mean unemployment will only escalate as the young graduates won’t be able to enter the civil service and I’m afraid in the long term this country will blow up as the disgruntled young people stage a revolution against this creeping conspiracy by the elderly.” At the very high political level, the impending bill is expected to relieve the President of the charge that the Magyezi bill was meant to personally benefit him. “We want to make things uniform so that the clergy who have been making noise are clearly isolated and put in direct conflict with the civil servants supposed to benefit from this new bill,” said a state house source adding that it will be hard to criticize the MPs for lifting age limits for the president the moment the other civil servants and judges previously barred on grounds of age become beneficiaries also of the same magnanimity by Parliament. To comment on this story and other Mulengera news stories, call or text 0703164755

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