Sunday, August 26, 2012
THE MANNER OF EFFECTING AMENDMENTS IN PARLIAMENT IN UGANDA
Source: The Clerk to Parliament DEFINATION OF AN AMENDMENT An amendment is defined as a subsidiary Motion moved in the course of a debate on another Motion, suggesting another option of proposal and decision on the main motion and question. An amendment may relate to a clause of a Bill or a Motion. OBJECTIVE OF AN AMENDMENT The objective of an amendment is either to modify a proposal before the House with a view to increasing its acceptability or to present to the House a different proposition as an alternative to the original question. TYPES OF AMENDMENTS Amendments may be divided into three categories: For omission of words, figures or punctuation marks; For substitution of words, figures or punctuation marks; and For addition or insertion of certain words, figures or marks. NOTICE OF AMENDMENT Notice of amendment to a Motion or Bill should be given in writing and signed by the Member giving notice and handed to the Clerk to Parliament. MOVING AN AMENDMENT An amendment to a Motion in the House can only be moved after giving written notice to the Speaker. Amendments are only applicable during the interval between the proposing and the putting of a question before the House, that is, during the time which is normally used for discussion. An amendment shall be moved after the question has been proposed by the Speaker, and it can be moved by the Member whose name appears on the notice of amendments or another Member can move the amendment in the name of the Member whose name appears but it shall be communicated to the Speaker. AMENDMENT OF NOTICES OF MOTION The Speaker may permit a Member to move an amendment to a Motion without notice if in the opinion of the Speaker; the amendment does not materially alter any principle embodied in the motion. This Principle also applies on amendments to bills. If the amendment proposed by a Member differs substantially from the Motion of which notice has been given, a Member may move a different Motion in accordance with the Rules of Procedure without attempting to make an amendment to the Motion on the floor of the House. AMENDMENTS TO MOTIONS The following conditions are adhered to while amending Motions: When any motion is under consideration, an amendment may be proposed to the Motion if it is relevant to the motion. Any amendment may be proposed to the amendment if it is relevant to that amendment. Any amendment moved and permitted by the Speaker shall be put in writing by the mover and delivered to the Clerk. No amendment shall be permitted if in the opinion of the Speaker it substantially alters the principle of the question proposed. A Member may move an amendment after the question upon the motion has been proposed by the Speaker and before it has been put at the conclusion of the debate upon the Motion. After an amendment has been disposed of, the Speaker shall put the question. In case two or more amendments are proposed to be moved to the same motion, the Speaker calls upon the movers in order in which their amendments relate to the text of the Motion. A Member may amend an amendment after the question on the original amendment has been proposed by the Speaker and before it has been put at the conclusion of the debate. The Speaker shall propose the question upon the original amendment as amended, as the case may be. Where an amendment requires that some words be deleted, the question to be proposed by the Speaker is “That the following words be deleted.” Where an amendment is to insert words in, or add words at the end of a Motion, the question to be proposed by the Speaker is “That the following words … be inserted (or added). Where an amendment is to delete words and insert or add other words instead, a question is proposed “That the following words … be deleted from the question,” and if the question is agreed to, the question is then proposed “That the following words … be there inserted (or added). If Upon a vote, Members do not agree to the first question, no further amendment is proposed to the words which were to be deleted. After the Speaker has proposed a question to an amendment and another amendment is proposed to it, the last mentioned amendment is dealt with as if it were the original Motion until all amendments to it have been disposed of. AMENDMENTS TO BILLS Amendments to Bills in the House are considered by the Committee of the Whole House chaired by the Speaker. The Clerk calls the number of each clause or sub-clause of the Bill in succession for consideration. If no amendment is proposed on the clause, or if all proposed amendments have been disposed of, the Chairperson proposes the question “That the clause (or the clause as amended) does stand part of the Bill.” CONDITIONS OF AMENDMENTS TO BILLS The Committee of the Whole House considers all amendments to a Bill. These include; proposed amendments contained in the report of the Committee which considered the Bill, proposed amendments on notice, amendments presented to the Committee and were rejected and amendments that were not presented before the relevant Committee. The Chairperson may permit that minor amendments proposed on the floor without notice are considered and may also refuse to consider any amendment of which less than one day’s notice has been given. Where any proposed amendment requires a subsequent amendment to carry meaning, notice of the subsequent amendment is given before the 1st amendment unless the Chairperson permits otherwise. In case two or more amendments are proposed to be moved to the same clause, the Chairperson calls upon the movers in the order in which their amendments relate to the text of the Motion. Where two or more proposed amendments seek to attain the same objective but in different ways, the Chairperson may call upon the sponsors of the amendment to reconcile them in order to achieve a harmonized position. All amendments moved should be consistent with other clauses that have already been agreed or any decision that has already been taken by the Committee of the Whole House. The Chairperson shall propose the question upon the original amendment or upon the original amendment as amended as the case may be. An amendment, new clause or new schedule may be withdrawn at the request of the mover by leave of the Committee of the Whole House before the question has been put. If the question has been proposed on an amendment to an amendment to a clause or schedule, the original amendment may not be withdrawn until the amendment to it has been disposed of. Unless an amendment to the preamble is necessary as a result of the previous amendment to the Bill, it shall not be considered. If any amendment to the title of the Bill is made necessary by an amendment to the Bill, it is made at the conclusion of the proceedings but no question is put that “the title (as amended) stand part of the Bill” or shall any question be put upon the enacting formular. CONSEQUENTIAL AMENDMENTS Certain amendments particularly to Bills may be consequential. Consequential amendments are those amendments which come about as a result of amending the principal clause or the main proposal on which such provisions are dependent. Thus, as a result of amending the main provisions, consequential amendments are automatically effected.