By Watchdog Reporters
The Alcohol Control Bill 2016 championed by MUkono Municipality Mp Betty Nambooze has passed a first tough hurdle, as legislators against the Bill attempted to block her seeking leave to introduce the Alcoholic Drinks Control Bill 2016. The divided House forced the deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah to direct the minister of Health to sit with Nambooze to harmonize the Bill during recess which was granted today, and retable the motion at the opening of the next session of Parliament.
The public health Bill was seconded by Bagoole Ngobi who some members had earlier accused of conflict of interest since his two brothers are suffering alcohol addiction. The Bill is being politicized by sections of parliament saying it has a hand of opposition leader Kizza Besigye who has intentions to cripple government revenue sources.
There is also a group of Parliamentarians being financed through Odonga Otto to oppose the law, suspected to be working for alcohol manufacturing companies. Otto who is known for his backing political positions that have funds, abandoned his village where his father as buried a couple of days ago, to attend parliament which had a session he had interest in.
It is understood that Otto had intention of introducing the Bill in the 8th parliament but abandoned the idea under unknown circumstances. Since Wednesday, the Aruu county legislator has been moving up and down campaigning against the Bill, and looking for allies who can shoot down the motion on the floor of the House. Some MPs told this website that money from alcohol making company is compromising the good will regulate to abuse of freedom to sell alcoholic drinks in the country. Cecilia Ogwal today told the Speaker that a group of MPs were caucusing against the Bill, in a suspect and abnormal manner. MPs against the Bill say alcohol is a major source of government revenue and therefore Nambooze’s law would hurt the economy. Such argument was peddled by government chief whip Ruth Nankabirwa. However, Leader of Opposition Winnie Kizza argued that appealing to Article 93 of the financial implications of the Bill was premature as what the MP needed was leave of absence to complete work on the Bill. Nambooze earlier posted on her wall coming face to face with “satan” as she prepared to table her motion. The Speaker adjourned parliament for recess, asking MPs to consult about the Bill.