Okin Elected Acholi Parliamentary Group Chairperson
The Chua West County legislator Mr Philip Okin Ojara has been elected new Chairperson of Acholi Parliamentary Group [APG], a caucus that brings together a total of 25 legislators from Acholi Sub region.
Mr Okin 47 replaces the outgoing APG chairperson Prof Morris Ogenga Latigo also the Agago North legislator who was elected in office in 2016.
Mr Okin was backed by seven legislators against six who supported Aruu County Member of Parliament Samuel Odonga Otto.
The election was conducted at the Boardroom of Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah on Tuesday afternoon.
Gilbert Olanya who was re-elected as the APG Secretary General told Acholi Times in an interview Tuesday that the election was very transparent adding that the members showed great unity.
“We had a successful election of our new chairperson. The members showed a great sense of unity and others reconciled to give the caucus its new image,’’ said Mr Olanya.
Olanya said the new chairperson is expected to revamp APG focus on addressing the contentious Apaa land wrangle between locals in Amuru and Adjumani districts.
Since 2012 Apaa has been a hotbed of violent clashes between the Acholi and Madi with each claiming ownership of the fertile piece of land that is estimated to be around 40 square miles.
Speaking to Acholi Times on Wednesday, Okin said uniting the Acholi Parliamentary Group was top on his priority.
“I want to bring our fellow members of parliament together; we need to
have a common course to achieve the agenda of the Acholi people and
sub-region,’’ said Mr Okin.
‘‘If we start speaking the same language and focus on Acholi issues, we shall surely move ahead,” he added.
The new elected APG chair pointed out that land conflict, environment, education, nodding
syndrome and improving investment on land in the region are some of the areas on which he will put focus.
Efforts to get comment from the outgoing APG chairperson Prof Ogenga Latigo were futile as his know phone number wasn’t available by press time.
APG, formed in n1989, has been instrumental in voicing plights of locals affected by the Lord’s Resistance Army insurgencies in the region for government’s response.
Other executive members elected
Ms Lilly Adong, the Nwoya Woman MP, Vice Chairperson APG , Secretary general Olanya Gilbert [Kilak South], Treasurer Peter Okot [Tochi County], Secretary for mobilization Aciro lucy Otim [Aruu North]. Mr Makmot Otto [Agago County] was elected the legal advisor; Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah was elected as APG patron.
Lyandro Komakech [Gulu Municipality] was elected in charge of land committee and compensation and Catherine Lamwaka [Omoro Woman MP] was put in the charge of committee on education, health and PRDP.