By Eliud Owalo
Kibwezi West MP Dr Patrick Musimba is planning to initiate a censure motion or a motion of ‘no confidence’ against National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi.
This motion is timely and should be embraced by all Kenyans especially the MPs themselves.
Speaker Muturi has severally shown that he does not serve and protect the interests of Kenyans but works at the behest of Uhuru Kenyatta.
He has turned the National Assembly to President Uhuru’s personal enterprise and not a place where the interests of citizens are protected.
The Speaker has severally turned the National Assembly to a theater of the absurd.Kenyans have watched in dismay as MPs heckle and hurl insults as the Speaker grins especially when it seems the opposition is on the receiving end.
Speaker Muturi’s grasp of procedure,Standing Orders and the law in general is pedestrian if not heavily partisan. This is disappointing especially coming from a lawyer.
The Speaker decides when to rule something as unprocedural and when it’s procedural regardless of what the Standing Orders and the law states. One notable circus was the manner in which he handled debate on the amendments to the Security laws. He exhibited open incompetence. Another reference point is the manner in which he is currently fumbling on the investigation of alleged corruption in parliamentary committees.
In commonwealth countries, where Kenya adopted its legislative mechanism from, parliamentary speakers play a crucial role ensuring the national assembly observes parliamentary rules, procedures and traditions. It is the Speaker’s duty to rise above the politics of the day and interpret these rules impartially, to remain neutral in government and opposition debates, to maintain order, and to defend the rights and privileges of Members, including the right to freedom of speech.
In order to preserve the trust of the House, the Speaker’s must uphold the sanctity of the national assembly; and his actions and utterances must be impartial.
Much to everyone’s dismay, Kenya’s 11th parliament has been a total contrast to what is to be expected from a commonwealth parliament. Since independence, indeed even during the single party days, we never witnessed such mediocrity as delivered by the Jubilee nominated-speaker from the August House.
Such scenes not only embarrass parliamentarians and Kenyan citizens, but also seriously undermines independence of parliament and compromises separation of powers in the government .Kenyans can no longer continue to be humiliated by a person who earns from our taxes.
We must therefore as Kenyans and especially MPs bring back sanity, integrity, competence and respect of the rule of law into the office of the Speaker and to do this Justin Muturi must leave.