Parliament’s Committee on Rules, Privileges and Discipline has commenced hearings into MP Francis Zaake (NUP, Mityana Municipality)’s alleged unbecoming conduct, with Chairperson, Hon Abdu Katuntu promising fairness.
Zaake, a Parliament Commissioner, is set to appear before the committee following comments attributed to a Twitter channel allegedly belonging to him, which posted content disparaging Deputy Speaker, Anita Among.
“We promise that this matter is going to be handled very professionally; we promise the public,” said Katuntu.
Bardege Layibi Division MP, Hon Martin Ojara Mapenduzi, who is the witness, appeared to pin Zaake.
“If we let MPs ridicule Parliament, where will they get the moral authority to condemn other groups who may attack the institution in future,” said Mapenduzi.
Hon Mapenduzi (C) appearing before the Committee on Rules
Asked by Hon Aisha Kabanda (NUP, Butambala District) on whether he would consider being magnanimous to Zaake on account of comments made by Deputy Speaker Among that allegedly triggered the impugned tweets, Mapenduzi said his concern is about the language.
“My concern is not about the comment of the Speaker and how Hon Zaake was offended…” he said.
Bardege Layibi Division MP, Ojala Mapenduzi has asked the Committee on Rules Discipline and Privileges to find Mityana Municipality MP Francis Zaake liable for offensive communication, against the person of Deputy Speaker Anita Among and the institution of parliament.#NTVNews pic.twitter.com/WAOGdyRYjQ
— NTV UGANDA (@ntvuganda) February 22, 2022
He added that while he empathizes with Zaake and his crusade against torture, nothing should push him to send the said controversial tweets.
Zaake is scheduled to appear before the Committee to defend himself.
It should be noted that the hearings of the committee is restricted by the rules to only make recommendations to the House on the specific question of whether Zaake has breached the code of conduct of MPs, and the committee has no locus to entertain issues relating to his removal as Parliament Commissioner.