Why is Speaker Matibini quiet when MPs are harassed by police

Why is Speaker Matibini quiet when MPs are harassed by police

By Nason Msoni

Harassment of Parliamentarians by police.

We think it is now prudent for parliament to speak out against this new sustained culture of threats, arrests, harassment and selective use and abuse of laws on elected Mps performing duties they were duly elected and are mandated to perform.

We feel Members of Parliament, (particularly opposition) and those with opposing views, are being unreasonably targeted and subjected to undignified humiliation by being subjected to arrests on the most flimsy charges for visiting or being visited by their own constituents. Do parliamentary duties entail speaking only in parliament to fellow parliamentarians?

The deafening silence on the part of the Speaker to act on this selective application of laws on Members of Parliament performing similar duties across the political divide is worrying. Why are some honourable members of the house persona non grata in their own constituencies to their own aggrieved constituents while others have an open cheque access to theirs?

The speaker has acted swiftly on a number of occasions against members of the public criticising the house in the interest of parliamentarians. He has been mute when parliamentarians are being harassed by police for visiting their own constituencies or speaking to their constituents.

Parliamentarians are law makers and peoples representatives who ought to be allowed access to their constituencies and constituents without let or hindrance at all times without bureaucratic encumbrances.

This novel practice of hauling Members of Parliament in panel vans by police and locking them up in filthy police cells through selective application of the law of unlawful assembly is undignified and should be condemned.

Essentially, what is at stake is the honour and dignity of the house that is being brought down in a manner that in the end the people who are represented cannot have respect for their representatives.

The indulgence by the Speaker in this matter is recommended with due respect.

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