Hostilities are boiling up inside Parliament after it was revealed a section of legislators are contesting a directive to streamline attendance of their house sittings.
Last week, Speaker Rebecca Kadaga directed that the registration book at the foyer be removed an hour after the plenary sittings are held in order to curb absenteeism in Parliament. Ms Kadaga revealed a litany of tricks used by MPs to make a quick buck ranging from signing the attendance register even when they dodge plenary sessions, backdating their signatures to days when they were not at Parliament to switching flights from parliamentary travels and returning home despite pocketing hefty allowances.
It also followed caution to the Buganda caucus, after most of the members missed a sitting to go visit Gen. Salim Saleh’s private farm in Kapeeka.
However the caucus chairperson, Godfrey Kiwanda says such a move is bound to create friction and confusion, adding that other methods should instead be employed to encourage attendance.
Last week, the speaker sent two legislators, Issa Kikungwe and Ssozi Kaddumukasa to the disciplinary committee for missing 15 sittings consistently without permission from her office.
House rules stipulate that the afternoon plenary session kicks off at 2pm.
“There are people (MPs) who sign and do not enter the chamber. They come and sign and go away without entering the plenary. That (removing the register) is intended to show us who has come in time and who is in that plenary because there are people who do not enter the plenary but you find them in the register,” Ms Kadaga said.
On a rather sarcastic note, there are some MPs that get on the Parliament buses and they alight along the way, never reaching the destination. The Speaker adds that she also has reports of MPs that go for workshops abroad and switch flights and come back the next day without attending.