The mandate by the Committee on Physical Infrastructure investigating the proposal to introduce digital number plates has been reassigned to a Classified Committee of the House.
Communicated by Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa during the plenary sitting on Wednesday, 11 October 2023, the assignment is in line with section 24(2) of the Public Finance Management Act, 2015 (PFMA).
The committee now has 45 days within which to report its findings to the Speaker.
Section 24 (2) of the PFMA states that a committee of Parliament comprising the chairperson of the committee responsible for Budget, the chairperson of the committee responsible for Defence and Internal Affairs, and another member appointed by the Speaker shall scrutinise the classified expenditure budget in a closed session.
“I held a meeting with the Attorney General and Minister for Security where a formal complaint was made. This was a classified procurement which we are handling in a manner not provided for in the PFMA,” said Tayebwa.
Tayebwa clarified that after a Classified Committee handles a matter, the report is handed over to the Speaker of Parliament who handles it with the head of the Executive.
“It is the duty of the Speaker to ensure that the issues of concern raised are followed up to the letter,” Tayebwa added.
He tasked the Minister for Security and other relevant ministries to appear before the Classified Committee that will interrogate the matter on digital number plates.
In the recent past, the Minister for Internal Affairs, Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Kahinda Otafiire and the Minister for Security, Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Jim Muhwezi, have made contradictory statements about the project.
The Deputy Speaker also invoked rule seven of the Rules of Procedure of Parliament to include the Chairperson of the Committee on Physical Infrastructure, Hon. Dan Kimosho Atwijukire, on the Classified Committee.
“This is because of the great work the committee has done and the evidence they have collected which they can share with the Classified Committee,” Tayebwa said.
The digital number plate project under the Intelligent Transport Monitoring System will be implemented in a phased manner and managed by Joint Stock Company Global Security for 10 years before it is handed over to government.
New vehicle and motorcycle owners will pay Shs714,000 for the digital number plates while already registered road users will be required to pay Shs150,000 and Shs50,000 for vehicles and motorcycles respectively.
These costs pushed Tororo District Woman Representative, Hon. Sarah Opendi to petition Parliament.