The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has refuted reports that Members of Parliament were to receive a salary increment.
In a live Twitter chat held at Parliament today May 28, Kadaga was answering some of the questions from the Journalists and public.
“There is no attempt or strategy to increase the pay of MPs in any way so it is a lie. Our budget was read in March so you would have seen it in the budget framework paper.” Kadaga said.
Last week, there were various reports in the media that there was a proposed double increment of monthly salaries for MPs from Shs11 million currently to Shs24 million.
In the related development, the Speaker was asked about the continued absenteeism of the MPs in parliament sittings.
She replied, “I was working on the list of absentees over the weekend for those members who don’t attend committees and plenary. They will be notified and the list is coming out by next week so they are put to shame.”
Also, records show that 107 legislators have not said a word on the floor of parliament and 65 of them only spoke once in the first 35 sittings of the second session of parliament. Kadaga said that she cannot force any member to speak.
“Those who want to speak, stand up in order to be chosen and contribute. In parliament you have to stand up to indicate that you have to speak. So if you do not stand up, I leave you.”
The Speaker was then asked about her decision of not appearing before the Constitutional Court sitting in Mbale to explain her role in the passing of the Age limit bill. She said that the Speaker and the President do not appear in Court and the law must be respected.
The Speaker said she’s immune from prosecution, citing Section 25 of the Parliament Act and the ones who sued her just didn’t know.
In addition, the speaker said that Parliament has handled 6 Bills and she is hopeful that by the end of this session in June, more 7 Bills will have been handled including Succession Bill, Sexual Offense Bill and Marriage and Divorce Bill.
Kadaga added that two Bills such as the Anti-Counterfeit Bill and PWDs Bill have been an issue of frustration. The Anti-Counterfeit Bill was first introduced in the 9th Parliament and withdrawn. It was reintroduced in the 10th Parliament and again withdrawn in January this year.
The speaker also admitted that Parliament has been a bit slow on a number of Bills such as the Civil Aviation Bill, Data Protection Bill, Mental Health Bill among others which are all still in process.