Col Dr Kizza Besigye has acknowledged that the ruling National Resistance Movement MPs in Parliament are likely to succeed in passing the controversial Constitutional Amendment Bill to remove the Presidential Age Limit, owing to their numbers.
Besigye together with mostly opposition politicians are working tooth and nail to block the amendment of Article 102(b) of the constitution, through such campaigns as “Togikwatako,” and “Red Ribbon” which kicked off today.
The Amendment Bill which is being handled by Igara west MP Raphael Magezi is expected to be tabled as early as this afternoon on the floor of parliament according to some reports.
Besigye told reporters at his home in Kasangati that the NRM MPs have the numbers they need to pass the bill.
“They don’t even need to be in that house (Parliament); they can sit anywhere and pass it,” he said.
The former Presidential candidate said however, that the nationwide campaigns to block the amendment will not be stopped by the mere passing of the bill.
“It (the bill) will be meaningless if the struggle is on to say ‘no,’” he said.
“This Togikwatako is not about the document; it is about the people’s will. — Don’t touch our will. Our will is that there must be a peaceful transition,” he said.
According to Besigye, the ongoing campaigns are long term and their end goal is removing President Museveni from power.
“Museveni will be stopped,” he said.” “It may take a while but he will be stopped; he is already naked.”
Besigye made reference of the President’s apparently unenthusiastic response from different parts of the country he has visited drumming support for the amendment of Article 26 of the constitution to ease government access to people’s land for its projects.
“He’s been getting bloody nose everywhere he goes with his land campaign,” Besigye said.
If MP Magezi’s Bill is tabled today, it will be in the absence of 25 Members of Parliament, who were suspended last week for three sittings by Speaker Rebecca Kadaga over indiscipline.
Most of the MPs are facing arrest for abusing the Police Bond that they were given last Thursday after they were dragged out of parliament and detained at various police stations.
The Ruling NRM government, with its 302 Members of Parliament, together with over 60 leaning toward the ruling party and another 10 UPDF representatives; controls well over over 80% of the Parliament.
They need only 66% to amendment the constitution.
The opposition would need to “steal” at least 90 MPs from the NRM side to get a fighting chance.