, MOMBASA, Kenya, Feb 27 – The Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi has criticized Members of Parliament for staging the removal of committee heads by accusing them of engaging in corruption saying this was soiling the integrity of the House.
Muturi expressed concerns that work in the committee’s had stagnated due to internal wrangling which has led to delay in the publishing of reports.
“You are all aware that committees have continued to face various difficulties ranging from delayed reports, internal wrangling and allegations and impropriety. Such allegations arise more from legislators than from the public particularly in this 11th Parliament. This has a negative impact on the integrity of the committee’s and Parliament as a whole – let us discuss this issues candidly and openly, only we can resolve whatever teething or chronic problems that may have beset our committees – I believe we can find a solution to this,” said Muturi
His sentiments were echoed by National Assembly Clerk Justin Bundi who said this latest obsession needed to be addressed as the law initiating the removal of the Committee heads was being abused.
“The last Parliament provided for a mechanism of removal of chairpersons and vice chairpersons, but we did not think at all that this application would be used as regularly as it is being seen today. So we need to reflect on this to see how we can ensure continuity, while also ensuring stability and good conduct,” said Bundi
There have been reports that Members of Parliament and more so Committee heads have been receiving handouts from people and institutions they were investigating in order to rule in their favour.
On Thursday, Budalangi legislator Ababu Namwamba survived an ouster from the Parliamentary Accounts Committee which he chairs after members accused him of being corrupt.
Committees were also urged to reduce the number of sittings held in camera as the issue raised a lot of suspicion over what goes on behind the scenes, citing issues of alleged bribing.
Another issue of concern was the behaviour of legislators within and outside the House.
The leadership implored on the members to maintain the honour and dignity of the National Parliament.
Just recently Nandi Hills legislators Alfred Keter was caught on the wrong side of the law when he was caught on camera abusing weighbridge officers over what he termed as fighting corruption and last week three opposition allied MPs led by Suba MP John Mbadi, Silverse Anami(Shinyalu) and Homa Bay women representative Gladys Wanga were suspended for their role in the chaos that marred the December 18th debate on Security Laws.