East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) Speaker, Daniel Kidega, has defended the need for luxurious cars for regional legislators.
While addressing press at Uganda parliament Monday, Kidega was asked members of EALA are demanding for expensive cars yet their tenure ends in 2 years.
He said EALA is a public institution and members need help reaching their respective places.
He said the regional parliament had allocated $$111m to the purchase of legislators’’ posh cars.
In May 2015, EALA members have demanded luxurious vehicles in a debate that later approved approved the $111m US (over Shs 200bn) EAC budget estimates for the 2015/16 financial year, demanding that part of it be spent on providing them with luxurious SUVs just like their counterparts in respective National Assemblies.
Since the EALA is the organ that passes the budget, the legislators easily won their bid de-facto and now 1.35 million US dollars (over 2.5bn/-) will be invested in providing them with large, luxurious and gas-guzzling Four-Wheel Drives, to pamper their egos.
Currently, the assembly has 45 elected members from the five member states and seven ex-officio members.
To pay for the legislators’ luxury chariots, writes allAfrica, the EAC Secretariat will now be compelled to shed 273m/- from its operating budget while the EALA office is to pool in 2bn/-, all from the estimated 200bn/- budget for the next fiscal year.
EALA third assembly in Uganda
EALA will sit in Uganda for 2 weeks to handle a number of issues, Museveni is expected to address the Assembly on 21/08/15.
While in Uganda, the assembly will debate on the EAC Electronic Transactions Bill, 2014 & the EAC Creative Industries Bill, 2015.
Both bills are at the 2nd Reading and are expected to sail through to the third Reading.
Also debate and adoption of various committee reports will be undertaken.
Since Kidega’s ascension to Speakership, 6 bills have passed, 10 reports and 4 resolutions adopted and 2 petitions received.
EALA will carry out outreach activities (tree planting) in Northern Uganda specifically Gulu Municipality for the first time.
A rally will also be held in Gulu Municipality on Saturday 22/08/15 to spread the message of integration.
“Consultation with a number of stakeholders will take place, since the integration is a people centered process,” Kidega said, adding, “EALA sessions are open to citizens from all walks of life it’s an opportunity to interact with legislators and vice versa.”