‘We Can’t Tolerate Your Laziness Anymore’ -Dep. Speaker Tayebwa Threatens To Fire Committee Chairpersons Over Absenteeism

‘We Can’t Tolerate Your Laziness Anymore’ -Dep. Speaker Tayebwa Threatens To Fire Committee Chairpersons Over Absenteeism

By Spy Uganda

Kampala: The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Thomas Tayebwa, has threatened to fire some of the chairpersons and their deputies who were appointed to the different committees over persistent absenteeism and non-commitment to work.

Tayebwa has since directed all parliamentary accountability committees to submit their reports by Tuesday to be adopted by parliament without debate. This comes after the opposition-led committees failed to meet the 10th October deadline.

On October 3rd, 2023, the House management commenced a strict surveillance of the attendance of Committee leaders during plenary sittings.


And to fully implement the above, the staff at the Clerk’s office have been assigned to undertake the attendance record surveillance and Prof Elijah Dickens Mushemeza, the Sheema South Constituency Member of Parliament to compile a parallel attendance record of the Committee Chairpersons and their deputies.

There are 14 Standing Committees each with about 30 members selected by party whips set up at the start of a new term of Parliament lasting two and a half years and against another two and half years. There are also 15 Sectoral Committees which makes a total of 29 Committees of Parliament.


This implies that if all Chairpersons and their Deputies attend a plenary sitting, there should be a combined 58 Committee leaders each time the House sits. So far, from Prof. Mushemeza’s recorded attendance, only 21 Chairpersons and their Vice Chairpersons attended on 3 October.

According to Tayebwa, on 4 October, only 19 of the Committee Chairpersons and their deputies attended the plenary sitting; and 26 attendances were recorded on 5 October. The record shows that on 10 October only 16 attended, and on 11 October only 14 attended.

Dr. Asiimwe Akiiki Florence, the Masindi District Woman Representative said the action of the House to reprimand absent Committee leaders and other members has been long overdue and wondered how they are selected for such positions.


According to the Bugabula County South Member of Parliament, Henry Maurice Kibalya, the leadership of Parliament should convene a meeting of the Business Committee to address the emerging issues before the Committee leaders are relieved of their responsibilities.

The Deputy Speaker has also cited the late delivery of reports by the Committee leaders thus undermining Article 163 Clause 5 of the Constitution which requires Parliament to debate and consider the report of the Auditor General and take appropriate actions within six months.

Currently, none of the four accountability Committees of Parliament which includes the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Local Government Accounts Committee (LGAC), and Committee On Statutory Authority and State Enterprises (COSASE) among others has met the 10 October 2023 deadline causing a heavy backlog of reports. But a section of Committee Chairpersons who spoke to URN on anonymity says there are several internal challenges at Parliament that affect their work that need redress.

Rampant absenteeism of legislators during the plenary sitting of the House has been a great concern of the leadership of the 11th Parliament with a record total of 555 lawmakers. Parliament’s Rules of Procedure Part 6 “Leave of Absence” of Sub-Rule 7, mandates the Speaker to send a warning to an absent legislator without permission.

However, while sub-rule 8 allows the Speaker to refer the matter of absenteeism to the House’s Committee on Rules, Privileges, and Discipline, no single lawmaker who violated this provision has ever been subjected to a disciplinary measure.

Equally, on several occasions, presiding officers have adjourned plenary sittings due to the absenteeism of Ministers in utter breach of Rule 50(1) of the Rules of Procedure of Parliament. This has led to several pleas from concerned citizens imploring the President and the appointing authority to intervene but also to no avail.

Accessdome.com: an accessible web community

Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *