By Rogers Wanambwa
KIU, Main Campus – On March 20th, 2022, H.E Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the President of Uganda, announced the death of the Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon. Jacob Oulanyah, at the age of 56 in Seattle, Washington.
Jacob L'Okori Oulanyah was a Ugandan agricultural economist, lawyer and politician who was serving as the Speaker of the 11th Parliament of Uganda. He was elected to that position on 24 May 2021, after defeating the former Speaker Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga.
Before that, Oulanyah served as Deputy Speaker of the Ugandan parliament from May 2011 until May 2021. He was also a member of parliament representing the Omoro County constituency, Omoro District, Acholi sub-region, Uganda's Northern Region.
Oulanyah was born in the then Gulu District on 23 March 1965 to Nathan L'okori and Karen Atwon. He attended St. Joseph's College Layibi, Dr Obote College Boroboro, and Kololo Senior Secondary School for his O-Level and A-Level education. In 1988, he joined Makerere University, the oldest university in the East African Community, where he studied agricultural economics.
He graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor of Arts in that subject. In that same year, Jacob entered law school, also at Makerere University, graduating in 1994 with a Bachelor of Laws degree. He served as speaker of the university students' guild during his stay at Makerere. In 1995, he attended the Law Development Centre (LDC), obtaining a postgraduate diploma in legal practice.
Jacob Oulanyah began his career as a lecturer at the Law Development Center and, in the same period, opened up a private law firm, Oulanyah, Onoria & Company Advocates. Later on, he would join active politics by successfully contesting for members of Parliament of Omoro sub-county in then Gulu district.
In 2011, Oulanyah, under the National Resistance Movement, would be reelected as Omoro sub-county MP and Deputy Speaker of Parliament, a position he would be reelected for in 2016.
On 24th May 2021, Jacob Oulanyah was voted Speaker of Parliament in a race against his former boss, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga and Kira Municipality MP, Ibrahim Ssemujju. Jacob obtained 310 votes against Kadaga's 197 and Ssemujju's 15.
Today, March 20th, Oulanyah was declared deceased by the President of Uganda, Gen Museveni, via the president's official Twitter account. May his soul rest in peace.
Facts Source: Wikipedia