KAMPALA – The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has threatened to refer Ishma Mafabi,the Eastern Youth MP to the Parliamentary Committee of Rules, Privileges and Discipline for investigation over his continued absence from Committee sittings if he doesn’t attend plenary sitting next week.
Kadaga issued the warning during Wednesday’s plenary sitting in which she revealed to have written a warming letter after Mafabi failed to attend a single sitting in all of the 35 sittings Parliament has had in this session.
“There are members who don’t attend this House. There is a member who attended poorly in the second and third session without the leave of the Speaker but this session, he hasn’t come at all, so I have written to him,”said the Speaker.
Kadaga went ahead to read Mafabi’s letter and threatened to drag him to the Rules Committee if he doesn’t abide by the call stating,
“I have established from records of attendance that you haven’t attended any sitting of this house this session. In the circumstances, I know that your continued absence from the house is contravention of rules of this house.”
The Rules stipulate that except with permission of the Speaker, a member shouldn’t absent himself or herself from fifteen sittings of parliament when the house is continuously sitting.
“I am now constrained to invoke powers of the Speaker under rule 117. I hereby give you a warning and accordingly require you to attend the house of the next sitting of Parliament should you fail to heed to this warning, I shall refer your absence to the Committee of Rules for consideration in accordance of the law,” said Kadaga.
In 2018, there were media reports that Mafabi within just months of becoming a legislator, was diagnosed with kidney failure after doctors discovered that his kidneys had stopped functioning properly and were on the verge of shutting down.
His attendance in Parliament was further affected by the requirement to pursue his law course at Islamic University In Uganda, a course he enrolled in to complement his Bachelor in Business Administration he was pursuing at the same University during his campaign.
The development comes at a time when a section of youths in Eastern region had threatened to impeach Mafabi before the 2021 general elections.
His constituents accuse Hon Mafabi of misrepresenting them.
James Jimmy Opoya, the District Youth Chairperson in Tororo was quoted in 2018 saying,
“The youth do not have an MP because the sitting MP has never bothered to attend any youth activity and he is often abroad. We are not happy.”