Today in Parliament | 12TH OCTOBER 2023

Today in Parliament | 12TH OCTOBER 2023

This is an update from the Parliament of Uganda marking the 6th Sitting of the 2nd Meeting of the 3rd Session of the 11th Parliament. This Sitting was chaired by the Deputy Speaker Rt. Hon. Thomas Tayebwa. In his communication, the Presiding Officer was concerned about Committee Chairpersons who don’t attend plenary. He also told members that he will be handling matters of national importance after the Prime Minister’s time. He further informed the House that he would amend the order paper to accommodate a statement by the Government in regard to the complaints raised by the LOP on the arrests of some leaders of the opposition immediately after his communication.

Reacting to the Speaker’s Communication, Bugabula County South MP, Hon. Kibalya Henry Maurice requested that the Speaker holds a special Business Committee meeting for the Committee leadership. On her part, Rakai DWR, Hon. Suubi Kinyamata Juliet rose on a procedural issue. Hon. Kinyamata accused Francis Zaake (MP, Mityana Municipality) of making defamatory remarks against her during his recent visit to Rakai district. She informed Parliament that the words uttered by Francis Zaake were so despicable to the extent that she couldn’t even utter them through her mouth but demanded to have the video clip played before Parliament so that the world would hear the derogatory words used against her. Kira Municipality MP, Hon Ssemujju Nganda on his part said “I have a problem with matters happening outside Parliament coming here and they become part of parliamentary business. The colleague complaining has said that what was said, she can’t utter it. How on earth can Parliament listen to what she said she can’t utter?”. In response, the Deputy Speaker referred to the recent case of Hon. Zaake Versus the Parliamentary Commission, where the  Court ruled that the code of conduct of Parliament can apply to you on issues in and outside Parliament. The Speaker therefore referred the matter to Parliament’s Rules, Privileges & Discipline Committee for investigation, a decision Kinyamatama protested accusing Parliament of trying to cover up for Zaake’s evil behavior on account of being a man “Let that video be played, I want the world to see what he said, why are we covering evil? An attack on a woman is an attack on all of us as female MPs, I have been keeping my cool, but I want this house to see what exactly happened. We can’t cover men who don’t respect women. I can’t be called what he called me,” Kinyamatama said. Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa later suspended the House for 10 minutes after tempers flared high.

On resumption of the House, Kira Municipality MP, Hon Ssemujju Nganda asked Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa to also refer Gen. Katumba Wamala to the Rules, Privileges & Discipline Committee for earlier on boxing Zaake during the 2017 heated debate on age limit bill, saying if Zaake is going to be investigated over the defamatory remarks, the person who had earlier attempted to box him to death should also be investigated. 

Deputy Speaker was forced to adjourn Parliament until next week after some MPs attempted to assault Zaake accusing him of making defamatory remarks against Kinyamatama, thus prompting the Opposition MPs to shield Zaake from being lynched

House adjourned to Tuesday, 17th October 2023 at 2.00 p.m.

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