It’s disappointing, says Winnie Kiiza as Okupa hints at forming new opposition party
Okupa says if FDC MPs rebelled and formed another party, FDC would be left with only eight MPs, rendering them a minority opposition in Parliament.
POLITICS | Outgoing Leader of Opposition in Parliament Winnie Kiiza has spoken of her “disappointment” at learning of being dropped from the position and felt like the power she had was being “grabbed from her without her knowledge.”
Kiiza, who has been in the US on official duty in her capacity as LoP was speaking to Crime24‘s Ritah Mugoya at Parliament on Monday.
She was last week sacked by Opposition Forum for Democratic Change president Patrick Amuriat and replaced with Gulu Woman MP Betty Aol Ochan in a reshuffle that affected several other opposition leaders in Parliament and left tongues wagging.
“I actually wanted to find out whether there was any communication that happened while I was away, to my disappointment, I didn’t find any communication to that effect. I have tried to find out around Parliament whether there is any communication, no communication yet. I tried to reach out to my leader, the Party President, I haven’t been successful in reaching out to him,” Kiiza said.
As Kiiza was addressing the media, FDC Secretary-General Nathan Nandala Mafabi’s letter must have been delivered to the Speaker of Parliament informing her office of the changes to Opposition leadership in Parliament.
The Mafabi letter is copied to Kiiza as outgoing LoP as well as Clerk to Parliament, and Opposition chief whip. This news website could not immediately verify whether Kiiza had received her copy by the time she addressed the media.
However, she conceded the position contrary to media reports that she would defy the party and demand to remain in the position as LoP.
“If there are changes, I would like to congratulate my party for that and I would welcome my sister Aol to take up the position,” Kiiza said.
Other changes in the minority government in the House include Kawempe South MP Mubarak Munyagwa replacing Abdu Katuntu as the new chairperson of the Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (Cosase) while Rubaga North MP Moses Kasibante is the new Cosase vice chairperson, replacing Bukedea Woman MP Anita Among.
MP Okupa hints on new party
Commenting on the new developments in the party, Kasilo County MP Elijah Okupa, who accompanied Kiiza to media briefing on Monday, claimed that the manner FDC was making changes was detrimental to the party as it is “bound to lose credibility as a leading opposition party in the country.”
“Assuming the changes are true and were based on kicking out those that supported Gen. Mugisha Muntu in the recent party presidential elections, I just want to send a caution on whoever is doing it that it would be a dangerous step taken,” Okupa said.
“You know we did amend the Constitution that in the last one year of the term in Parliament, people can cross parties without losing the seat.”
Okupa warned that FDC risked losing its opposition as majority opposition party in Parliament, claiming that out of the 37 MPs, there were only eight who supported FDC president Amuriat.
“Assuming within that one year, the remaining members formed a new party, they would be the majority because they would be 25 and what will FDC be in that remaining one year, they would be a minority and there would be another leader of opposition automatically,” Okupa said.
“So they must think about that as well because these are things which will happen.”