Ababu Namwamba and five other lawmakers kicked out of accounts team


evozglc4ilyfgnqpo552e28e761f31Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso Tuesday rejected a bid to derail debate on the report of the Committee on Privileges because of a case filed in court.
Dr Laboso said the National Assembly was seized of the matter before it went to court, and even so, it was an issue of indiscipline within the Public Accounts Committee, which was suspended because of claims of extortion and bribery. “This is a matter of the House debating on whether to impose sanctions on its members for breach of privilege, and therefore it is an internal matter. I am unable to find that the continued debate on this matter will prejudice the ruling of any court,” said Laboso. With that MPs overwhelmingly adopted the report which recommends the suspended watchdog committee be dissolved and new members appointed. The adoption also means six MPs Ababu Namwamba (Budalang’i), Cecily Mbarire (Runyenjes), Ahmed Abass (Ijara), James Bett (Kesses), Omondi Anyanga (Nyatike) and Samuel Arama (Nakuru Town West) will be banned from PAC for the rest of the Third Session – the rest of this year. Christopher Omulele (Luanda) wanted to have the names deleted, but the bid was defeated. The debate took off to a stormy start as MPs Daniel Maanzo (Makueni) and John Waluke (Sirisia) said the case was “live in court” and the hearing date had been set for Thursday. They pleaded with the Deputy Speaker to reject debate or postpone it until the matter in court was settled. See also: Ababu wants Westgate report made public But their colleagues Dalmas Otieno (Rongo), Jamleck Kamau (Kigumo), Nicholas Gumbo (Rarieda) and John Mbadi (Suba) dismissed the court proceedings as immaterial to the proceedings of the House.
They said if the debate on the report was set aside on account of the court proceedings, it would have set a bad precedent where people will be rushing to court to impede the House from doing its job. “One of the prayers the applicants made was to stop debate, but I know the courts declined. How can it then be sub judice? What then happens to the principle of separation of powers when a court latches on anything that is going on in Parliament and asks that the matter not be debated?” asked Gumbo. “When someone goes to court after a report has been tabled in this House, that is an abuse of the court process,” added Kamau. Millie Odhiambo (Mbita) looked at the issue as a dilemma for the House, more so in regard to obeying the law and protecting the doctrine of separation of powers.

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