By Isaac Akugizibwe
KIU, Main Campus - The position of the Guild Union Speaker has been dominated by males for almost half a decade. The election of two strong female voices to fill the top most office in the 2019/20 August house is a mark that has proven more than enough that the male dominance will soon end.
The rise to power of Biira Janet and Atoo Patricia Dollica as Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively in 2019 was a storm that swept away the odds like dust. The duo were greeted with utter distrust from many Parliamentarians who only judged them based on their gender.
Using their knowledge of law, they were able put the house to order. The latter advocated for Unity between the government and the opposition. This helped end a conflict of power between the two antagonistic camps in the Guild Parliament.
For Patricia, being a Deputy Speaker meant doing everything possible to control the house filled by intellectuals especially in the absence of her senior. She never had time for the odds and bullies but to do everything required of her by the guild constitution, something that worked for the whole office. Her voice is one of the very few that have stood out against gender stereotypes in the Guild Union Parliament.
"I opted for unity in the Parliament and surely the whole office of the speaker did great to end gender stereotypes in the Parliament especially through strict adherence to the rules of procedure provided by the Guild Union constitution," she said.
Apart from her exquisite performance in parliament, Patricia has also represented students on several occassions. She has represented and defended students before the university's disciplinary committee as well attending senate meetings on behalf of students in absence of the speaker.
She credits her senior Biira Janet for being cooperative. "The office of the speaker has been so determined and coperative," Patricia admits.
She adds that it is that cooperation and coordination that enabled them to unite the Parliament and surely with that, gender stereotypes eventually declined.
Serving as Deputy Speaker not only changed her personality but also the overall outlook of things around her. Patricia admits, the position has tremendously turned her into a total quality person with undisputable confidence and self esteem.
"I can now speak to any crowd or individual as a leader and impact a change in one way or the other," Patricia affirms.
Patricia and Biira will hand over power this Saturday, 12th December 2020. She is looking forward to joining Law Development Center in January 2021 from where she intends to kickoff her passionate law career. Her lifelong dream is to serve as Uganda's Chief Justice at one time.