By Jumah Nsubuga
During the official opening of the fourth season of the 9th parliament (state of the nation address) held at Serena Hotel , president Museveni confirmed to MPs that he will not allow the passage of marriage and divorce bill.
“Marriage and divorce bill caused civil war and I don’t want civil war in Uganda” president Museveni told MPs attended the state of the nation address.
President Museveni’s decision to drop marriage and divorce bill annoyed members and said that he was not well consulted, the reason why he is rejecting the bill.
The objective of the bill is to reform and consolidate the laws relating to marriage, separation and divorce to provide for the types of recognized marriages in Uganda, marital rights and duties, recognition of cohabitation in relation to property rights, grounds for breakdown of marriage, rights of properties on dissolution of marriage and for other connected purposes.
In 203 the speaker of parliament Rebecca Kadaga suspended the debate of the bill to allow MPs time to make further consultations from their voters. The author of the bill who is the minister of Justice and constitutional affairs Minister Kahinda Otafire told parliament that MPs need more time to explain to the population the benefits in the bill.
The angry female legislators across all parties opposed president Museveni decision of drop the bill.
Lyantonde district woman MP Grace Namara said that “the packaging of the bill was bad and it needs to be repackaged. We should engage the president because it seems that the president did not understand the value of the bill. We should also do more sensitization with the public about the bill”.
“The president has been misguided as far as the bill is concerned. Am wondering why Mr Museveni said that the bill will cause civil war when the country having many unstabilized families. We should interact with him (president) and show him the benefits of the bill. Other countries like Tanzania, Kenya and South Africa among others already have the law but they have never experienced any civil war. The intention of the bill is to protect families not to create civil wars as mentioned by the president” Said Sheema district woman MP Rose Nyakikongoro (Indep).
“I equally support president’s decision to drop the bill because during my consultations with my people they rejected the bill saying that its intention is to bring conflicts in marriages and entire families at large. The bill should not be allowed to step in again in parliament” Said Ntenjeru North MP Amos Lugolobi (NRM).
Mean while Busongora North MP William Nzoghu (FDC) revealed that “All women behind this bill have intentions of sharing men’s properties. The bill is useless and will not see the light of parliament. I therefore commend president Museveni for rejecting the bill for the unity of our families”.