Ugandan parliament elects Jacob Oulanyah as new speaker

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Ugandan members of parliament on Monday elected the new speaker and deputy speaker of parliament for a five-year term of office.

Chief Justice Alfonse Chigamoy Owiny-Dollo, who presided over the election of the speaker of the 11th parliament, declared Jacob Oulanyah the winner after he garnered 310 votes in the election.

Oulanyah, the former deputy speaker of the 10th parliament beat his main rival and former Speaker Rebecca Kadaga who won 197 votes.

Kadaga, the former speaker of the 10th and 9th parliament ran as an independent candidate after losing the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party endorsement to Oulanyah on Sunday.

Ibrahim Ssemujju of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party trailed with just 15 votes. Two votes were declared invalid.

Oulanyah was sworn in by President Yoweri Museveni. “This particular election has been challenging. As a result, expectations are high, fears and uncertainties exist but together we should build friendship, mend the bridges and work together,” said Oulanyah after assuming office.”We should agree that no view shall be suppressed and work with tolerance.

We should act in a harmonious way. We have collective responsibility. I promise to provide leadership through this and walk the talk,” he said.

Oulanyah who presided over the election of the deputy speaker declared Anita Among of the ruling party as the winner with 415 votes.

Yusuf Nsibambi of FDC won 37 while independent Mohammed Nsereko got 24 votes. A total of seven votes were invalid.

The elections at the first sitting of the parliamentary session of the 11th Parliament were held at the Kololo Independence Ceremonial Grounds in the capital Kampala.

The newly elected members of parliament were sworn in into office last week as they began a new five-year term of office after the Jan. 14 general elections.

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