Lango MPs seek to retain late Engola’s ministerial seat

The late Engola was the Minister of State for Labour. He was gunned down in Kampala in May 2023.

The top leadership of Lango Parliamentary Group has urged President Museveni to consider appointing one of its members as replacement of late Charles Engola to cabinet.

The late Engola was the Minister of State for Labour. He was gunned down in Kampala in May 2023.

The appeal was made by Judith Alyek (Kole Woman MP) - whose term as President of Lango Parliamentary Group was extended for another two-and-a-half years - while addressing journalists at Parliament after the Group’s annual general meeting.

“We lost one of our key members in May 2023," she said, "Charles Engola was shot by his bodyguard and in less than one year we lost two members [including former Dokolo Woman MP Cecilia Ogwal] and as far as appointments are concerned to replace Engola, this is at the discretion of appointing authority, I know, [but] if he thinks he should make the position of Engola come from Lango, we have no objection."

She added: "We aren’t going to force him to appoint one of us to replace Engola, so we shall wait. We only wish that the replacement of Engola comes from Lango.”

Engola was shot dead by his body guard in May 2023 and in early 2024, the group also lost Cecilia Ogwal, former Dokolo Woman MP.

Commenting about the by-election that will be held to elect the late Ogwal’s replacement, Alyek said the Lango Parliamentary Group will not take sides on which candidate or political party should replace her in order to maintain unity and cohesion with the Group.

“As far as I know, the by-election that is taking place in Dokolo, for us as Lango Parliamentary Group, we shall welcome anybody who will win that election," she said.

"We aren’t going to say, we want this person, it will be people’s choice. So if there are divisions, outside there between the different political parties... we will not say you are from FDC, UPC or NRM we welcome anybody in our group irrespective of political affiliation.”

During the news briefing, the Lango MPs in the 11th Parliament have picked priority areas for focus, including development of roads, where the Group came up with a master plan which covers all road networks in Lango sub-region.

Priority has been put on five roads, including the Lira-Kamdini Road. The MPs say, presently, Lango only has 3 percent of national tarmac road network, which is the lowest in the country.

Samuel Opio (Kole North), general secretary of the Group, also called on the government to take up more roads in Lango and inject more funds in the district roads.

“We also hope that Government will continue to invest more resources in terms of district roads," Opio said.

"This year, Shs1bn has been provided to the districts to be able to maintain more roads but it is still insufficient for a place like Lango which ahs a very big percentage of swamp crossings that require a lot of money for the construction of bridges and crossing points for the community.”

The Lango Parliamentary Group also extended gratitude to President Musevebi for reconsidering the construction of Akii-Bua Stadium, after an earlier dramatic exclusion of the facility from among the stadia meant to host the 2027 African Cup of Nations (Afcon).

“I am happy that we really advocated together with other stakeholders Akii-Bua is going to be constructed because at a certain point, Akii-Bua had been excluded," Alyek said.

The legislator said the Minister of State for Sports, Peter Ogwang, took an Egyptian contractor to begin the construction of Akii-Bua Stadium.

"I want to thank the President for reconsidering the construction of Akii-Bua Stadium. The construction is starting and I hear next week."

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