Majority leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale shocked the nation when he exposed his colleagues in committees for soliciting bribes and behaving inappropriately.
Duale said some MPs have resorted to calling press conferences to demean colleagues they sit with in committees.
He further said that due to greed for money, some MPs attend sessions as friends of committees but lock out rightful members.
“It is worrying that some members pack rooms leaving actual members with no places to sit. Imagine a committee with only the chair and friends who have no vote,” he said.
“Sittings have become a parade where you cannot distinguish witnesses, suspects and MPs. We have seen these members on live television hugging, embracing and exchanging pleasantries with accused persons who appear before them. This has left the public with a negative perception,” he said.
The revelation prompted National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi to read a riots act to MPs for the misconduct.
Muturi warned of consequences including removal from the committees if the lawmakers are found guilty of bribery and other offences.
Minority Leader John Mbadi also weighed in on the issue and registered his displeasure with Kieni MP Kanini Kega on how he handled the probe on the importation of contraband sugar.
“The craving for media attention is doing members more [harm than good]. They have resorted to rent-seeking missions and turn rowdy during committee proceedings,” Mbadi said.
Mbadi said Kega, who is chairperson of the Trade and Investment committee, failed to take charge of the joint committee on Trade and Agriculture that was probing the scam.
“He allowed members to become rowdy. They started exchanging words as suspects watched while folding their hands. How could he, yet there is the possibility that the sugar being consumed by millions of Kenyans is poisonous?
“How do you go to a committee and become so emotional that you defend a CS as if you work for his or her docket? We have allowed money to change hands so that we can defend these CSs.”
Mbadi said “serious investigations” into the bribery allegations were launched and that MPs found guilty will be removed from committees.
“We have allowed ourselves to be called ‘Mpigs’ because of such conduct. This should not be viewed as witch-hunt as these small handouts have cheapened our oversight role to the extent that we hug people accused of murder,” he said, adding it was not too late to ‘clean’ the house.
Muturi said it is unfortunate that such things happen and that investigations will help restore sanity and integrity.
The Speaker further directed departmental committees to prepare lists of members who have been dodging committee sessions for possible disciplinary action.
“You have no business defending people appearing before you. Let them speak for themselves as at the end of the day, you act as judges who determine the next courses of action,” he added.
Isn’t it convenient to have Kenya’s latest breaking news at your fingertip? That’s right, at kenyanreport.com (which is an intriguing platform to explore all types of Kenya news); you’ll find good informative blogs and articles on various headlines. As a news-savvy person, you’ll not be disappointed with breaking news, entertainment news, politics and political happening, diaspora news, celebrity trend and many more.