Record Breaking 4 Minute Plenary Session in the Ugandan Parliament yesterday!
“The session started at 2:00pm and ended at 2:04pm, yes only 4 minutes! Members who are used to coming in after 2:10pm waltzed in long after plenary had ended. One is heard asking “What is going on here.. why did I even put on my suit?” (Sheila Nduhukire, 17.01.2018).
Yesterday was a weird day in the Parliament, the Parliament that has been filled to the brim during the Age Limit debacle and the strangers in the chambers. To a day of silence. Why it is so special is that the whole session with four Members of Parliament, 10 people in total and the Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah adjourning it quickly. Some speculated that it was suspension if it.
The Deputy Speaker came with the argument that everyone was busy with Budget Framework Papers for the Financial Year 2018/2019. Hon David Bahati laid forward the Certificate of Gender Equality compliance for the FY 2018/19. Clearly it wasn’t interesting since none of the Members of Parliament showed up.
No one cared and no one had anything to say about Gender Equality concerns for the next financial year. For the Minister Bahati must know that the value of his work and his paper was pointless. Therefore it was adjourned before even starting. This is a mockery of the Parliament and of the Plenary Session, that the MPs didn’t show-up and that the paper wasn’t discussed. That the Deputy Speaker started the Plenary, but it didn’t amount to anything.
That the Certificate has little value should know be well-known since it took 4 minutes to skate off and take it easy.
It cannot be seen as important, even reported only 4 MPs, total 10 people inside the Chamber as the Plenary was starting. 4 Minutes are to little to be professional and even get any business done. Usually you need longer time 4 minutes to get anything significant done. The MPs knows this, the Deputy Speaker knows this and the Finance Minister knows it too. All of the ones who was in the chamber yesterday, should laugh and wonder why they even where there.
Because this was a waste of space and time. Well, it made 4 minutes of joy for the journalists and also the political active wondering what really happen. Why the Deputy Speaker ordered this Plenary Session and why they did it on short notice. He knew and the MPs knew that the Commissions are working on the coming budget and the Framework Papers to be put forward for vote later in the year. Clearly Oulanyah should have known so.
4 minutes of a Plenary Session is just nonsense, we all know that. Oulanyah want to look smart and not take credit for the waste. Clearly, it was foolish, we all can see it. The Certificate on Gender Equality is not important. If it was it would be more than 4 MPs and taken more than 4 minutes to discuss what the text of the certificate was really about. Peace.