Jacob Oulanyah sets lasting footsteps in Uganda Parliament

Last Updated on: 24th March 2023, 01:09 pm

The growth of the current Parliamentary leadership has been attributed to the former speaker of Parliament the Late Jacob Oulanyah.

This above was said by the Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs Norbert Mao while remembering Oulanyah’s influence and legacy.

Mao made the statement during a memorial service held early on Thursday, March 23, 2023, at the Parliament building in memory of the Late Speaker Jacob Oulanyah. 

The former speaker succumbed to cancer,  according to a medical report last year in Seattle, United States of America. 

The speaker of Parliament, Anita Among has noted that the current leadership of the House will continue working in the footsteps and beliefs of her predecessor Oulanyah.

The Speaker said that evidence-based legislation is one of the key areas that Parliament is to continue focusing on, even in the absence of Oulanyah who believed in it.

“Jacob Oulanyah is one person who believed in evidence-based legislation. He would ask you, “where is that coming from…is it hearsay?” 

“And as the leader of Parliament, we will ensure that we follow the footsteps of the Late Jacob Oulanyah who believed in a people-centered parliament,” Among added with a promise.

She further said the Late Speaker believed in humanity and the principles of Ubuntu that the Parliament is to continue with.

“We will work for the people, for humanity. We are people’s servants and we are here to serve the people of Uganda and serve humanity wherever they are. We will continue working and remembering what our predecessor believed in,” the Speaker emphasized.

She assured the late Speaker’s family of Parliament’s support, noting that the annual memorial prayers are to continue to ensure that the legacy of the deceased is kept.

Peter Ogwang, state minister of sports said the deceased was not corrupt and free.” Oulanyah never misused the institution called Parliament. Oulanyah was a God-fearing person.”

Andrew Oulanyah who is the current Member of Parliament of Omoro County and the son of the Late Speaker noted that the legacy his late father has left behind will never be heavy. 

“The legacy is not cast only upon the son or the MPs, it is cast upon the lives of all the people he touched.”

“He (my father) spoke so passionately about Ubuntu. He did not only speak about it, he lived it. As leaders, we are challenged to sacrifice and lead people by example. We must live what we preach,” he reiterates

In his preaching during the prayers, Abed Bwanika (NUP MP, Kimaanya-Kabonera Division) described Oulanyah as a humble leader, just like Moses in the Bible, who was available in service to everyone.

He added that Oulanyah will be remembered for being courageous and a servant leader who appreciated life as a victory with suffering.

Bwanika said prayers for the Speaker and Deputy Speaker, whom he said has followed Oulanyah’s footsteps like Joshua followed in Moses’ footsteps.

At the time of his death, Oulanyah was also the Omoro County Member of Parliament and only served as Speaker for nine months and 24 days, having been sworn in on May 24, 2021.

Whereas significant questions about his death arose from both the public and his family, the latter seems to have “left it to God to judge” those rumored to have had a hand in his sudden death.

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