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Winnie Byanyima cautions MPs against amending constitution on presidential age limit
Former three time Mbarara Municipality MP Winnie Byanyima who is now the Executive Director of Oxfam International says removing the presidential age limit would be dangerous for Uganda.

President Yoweri Museveni is serving last five year-term as per the current constitution. But there seems to be moves, especially among some legislators of the ruling  NRM party to amend Article 102(b) of the Constitution which caps the upper age limit for someone to run for the presidency at 75 years. 

Now aged 73, President Yoweri Museveni will be 77 years by the next election in 2021 and an amendment of the constitutional clause would mean president Museveni who shot his way power in 1986 could theoretically mean he could rule Uganda for life.

Former three time Mbarara Municipality MP Winnie Byanyima who is now the Executive Director of Oxfam International says removing the presidential age limit would be dangerous for Uganda.

Though President Museveni has not publicly spoken out for or against removal of the age limit, Byanyima is urging him to clearly pronounce himself to avoid speculation.  

At the recent burial of former DP President General John Ssebaana Kizito, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Kahinda Otafiire said whereas there is no proposal to amend the presidential age limit in the proposed  constitutional amendments, such a move is provided for in the constitution.

In a recent interview with NTV, Deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana said Cabinet would go with what the majority of Ugandans want.

There has been many calls to President Museveni to respect the constitution as it is now and to MPs not to amend the presidential age limit clause.

Winnie Byanyima says the MPs owe it to Ugandans to make sure the amendment is not passed. She says that the public should make it known to their MPs that they not want the age limit removed.

But if the 2005 amendment of the constitution to remove the presidential term limit is anything to go by, the NRM majority in Parliament easily amend the constitution, which the president would then respect in accordance with his oath of allegiance.      

On the speculation whether she would offer herself for the highest office in the land, Byanyima who has previously said she is capable and has the relevant experience to be  President didn't rule out the possibility as she concludes her 5-year contract with Oxfam International as chief executive.

Byanyima, who has been a longtime crusader of equality and the rights of deprived people, also spoke out against rampant land grabbing by the rich against the poor.

She appealed to government not to amend the Land Acquisition Act that seeks to allow government compulsorily acquire private land for public works.  

Byanyima joined Oxfam, a UK based Global NGO working in over 90 countries, in 2013 after a stint with UNDP and earlier the African Union Commission, that seeks to end injustices and address the causes of poverty in the