At least shs2 billion has been spent in total for the purchase of iPads to facilitate the work of Members of Parliament.
The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Anita Among on Thursday told MPs that the gadgets had already been purchased by parliament and ready to be distributed to them as soon as possible.
“I am glad to inform you that iPads instead of us asking for papers for documents are now available,” Among said.
According to the Director of Communications at Parliament, Chris Obore, the gadgets have already arrived and are being engraved and configured with the system at parliament before being distributed to legislators.
“The iPads have been received by parliament but not yet distributed to MPs until next week. As per regulations, they are being engraved as parliament of Uganda property and configured into the parliament digital system,”Obore told the Nile Post.
He confirmed Parliament had spent shs2 billion for the gadgets and this means each iPad cost shs3.5 million.
Obore insisted that the iPads remain property of parliament that legislators have to return at the end of the term.
“The standing orders are that you are supposed to hand it to parliament but if you so wish to retain it, the government valuer puts a price on it, the member pays the money which is sent to the consolidated fund and the member goes with the iPad,”Obore said.
The Director of Communications at Parliament said that only five MPs of the 10th parliament returned the gadgets, adding that the others paid between shs550,000 and shs700,000 each for them and retained as the money was taken to the government Consolidated Fund.
Underscoring the use of iPads, Obore said the gadgets would be useful to legislators as they do their work.
“They will facilitate members to be up to date with what is transpiring administratively and what is required of them.”