Imagine going for a few rounds against Vladimir Klitscho once every month or two. That is more or less what Ukrainian MPs go through in their national assembly. Theirs is a career that probably has a vacancy ad closing line that sounds like, “Candidates skilled in hand-to-hand combat are highly encouraged to apply.”
Perhaps one Dodoma MP has some Ukrainian DNA too, based on one approach he controversially suggested recently to be used to settle ‘political fights’ between CCM and opposition MPs in our parliament.
In Ukraine no parliamentary business is let outside the House. Whenever you have an issue with another MP you finish your business right there on the floor of the august chamber!
I doubt if that is the correct approach as opposed to long and ridiculous deliberations, or whether it is effective at all. But, honestly, sometimes I, like many other folks in Bongoland, wish our MPs were invited to attend their parliamentary meetings in Ukraine for just one week.
This would teach them a lesson or two on taking parliamentary business seriously. No disrespect intended towards our waheshimiwaz, but I really wish our MPs would get the Ukrainian legislative assembly dose. After all, even gifted soccer players need to go to other leagues abroad to see how others play their game.
In Ukraine, MPs take their business so seriously that its very common for, say, a ruling party MP to throw a punch at a nearby opposition counterpart who dares utter nonsensical sentiments such as, ‘I don’t support your budget’, or, even worse, ‘You have a frail leader.’
And the opposition MP would normally respond in kind with a few uppercuts at the attacker. In just under a minute, all hell would break loose in the House, sometimes to the point of even finding the Speaker on top of one annoying parliamentarian while unleashing the wrestling moves she or he can remember from WWE.
I do not at all suggest that that should happen in Dodoma, not at all (although it would be some worthy local reality TV for a change). As a matter of fact if that is what I propose, I doubt if my editor would even allow this read to see the light of day.
What I am trying to do is make a simple, unstructured and unofficial comparison of our MPs’ ‘seriousness’ with their business in parliament with regards to other parliamentarians around the world, such as those folks in Ukraine.
See, the wananchi are very simple beings. All we want to see is effort, commitment and drive to unclog social bottlenecks that deny us access to the promised land of a better life.
With this better life we would not even be bothered whenever we saw a few chosen ones living ‘the life’ at our expense: Speeding along in 4x4 fuel guzzlers, getting massive allowances more than our poor folks’ salaries by just talking gas and getting chunks of public ‘goodies’ and properties at throw-away prices.
If the wananchi had at least their basic share of the good life, I doubt if they would complain, even if some bigwig somewhere up in the Bongoland hierarchy decided to use public monies to buy a Porsche Carrera for his missus. Or protest when another one took kickbacks from dubious oil and gas contracts and decided to buy million-dollar properties in Palm Jumeirah, in the rich folks’ playgrounds of the UAE.
The point is, at least MPs should make the wananchi believe that they are taking their welfare seriously while in Dodoma. But if MPs and ministers spend precious and expensive time debating trivial matters, such as a misspelling in a certain document or congratulating all their kith and kin from siblings, in-laws, university days exes to neighbours and pastors, clearly you give the wananchi a reason to think that maybe the House is not that respectable and useful after all; maybe its like other maskaniz in our street corners where we discuss stuff such as Taifa Stars and Maximo all day long.
In Ukraine a simple unfortunate MP’s comment would transform the Parliament chamber into a makeshift boxing arena where scuffles would break out among parliamentarians. Such occurrences are common there.
Now just imagine if our MPs, both from the ruling party and the opposition, were debating the recent budget in Ukraine’s parliament: all those exchanges, sentiments and claims against others would have triggered something that would have put our TV reality shows to shame. What else would the wananchi do? They might as well watch and enjoy themselves the free spectacle.
Maybe even their Ukrainian hosts would have second thoughts about welcoming them. “We thought we were a crazy parliament, but these Bongoland folks are clearly from out of this planet,” they would have said to themselves.
Just imagine Hon. Lyatonga, who spent a huge chunk of his comments on the PMO’s budget proposals reminding the Premier on his promise for a visit regarding that international grain market somewhere in Mremaland. If it were in Ukraine, I can picture Hon. Lyatonga with a microphone up in the air chasing the premier around the parliament chamber.
“Wait till I get my hands on you. I am tired of reminding and begging you everyday. Today am taking you to Kiraracha. Madam Speaker, I will bring this guy back after a few days,” he would say. And this would have been the case for every MP who has an issue with a minister or a fellow MP. But the most interesting part probably would have been the requests for the Speaker’s directive on various parliamentary matters.
In this case, I can imagine Madam Speaker running the House with a sling/catapult and maybe a basket of rotten eggs close at hand. Every time an annoying MP stood up and attempted to draw her attention to matters she was clearly not interested in would have resulted in a rotten egg landing on the poor MP’s face.
I can imagine Hon. Mnyika retiring to his hotel every few minutes to take a shower and change clothes during the parliamentary sessions. How hilarious!
This is a work of humour and satire and should be taken as an individual opinion.