Godbless Lema to appear before Parliamentary Committee

03Apr 2019
Polycarp Machira
The Guardian
Godbless Lema to appear before Parliamentary Committee

THE deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Dr Tulia Acson yesterday ordered the Arusha MP, Godless Lema to appear before the Parliamentary Privilege, Ethics and Powers Committee for remarks that the Parliament is weak.

Arusha MP, Godless Lema

Lema while contributing on a motion tabled by the committee chairperson, Emmanuel Mwakasaka    Kawe MP, Halima Mdee   supported the CAG statement that the Parliament is weak also reiterated that   indeed it is.


"I can hereby also state that the Parliament is week just like others have also said" he said, amid applause from the opposition MPs in the House.


His remarks forced the Deputy Speaker to intervene, calling on the committee chairperson to follow procedures and invite the vocal lawmaker to appear before his team.


  Kawe MP  will   miss two consecutive Parliament sessions following the decision by the National Assembly to suspend her.


Her suspension started yesterday at the ongoing 15th session of the National Assembly than runs until July this year and the 16th session in September and goes into October.


She was found guilty of disrespecting the  Parliamentary Privilege, Ethics and Powers Committee for supporting the Controller and Auditor General (CAG), Prof Mussa Assad's remarks that the Parliament is weak.


Tabling the committee's report and recommendations, chairperson, Emmanuel Mwakasaka told the House that the youthful lawmaker through her actions that she admitted before the team clearly showed she was disrespectful to the Parliament.


He said a video clip showed   Kawe lawmaker speaking on 2nd January,2019 in support of the CAG remarks. The chairperson noted that Mdee also has a record of appearing before the committee three times for different offences, some which landed her into suspension.


" During the interrogation, she told the committee that she supported the CAG statement that the Parliament was weak, adding that by such submission , the lawmaker  also showed contempt of the Parliament.


Mwakasaka said her admission and the video clip is in line with the Evidence Act , Cap 6 which states that in any criminal proceedings, an information retrieved from computer system, network or serves or obtained through surveillance of means of preservation of information including facsimile , machines , electronic transmission and communication facilities shall be admissible in evidence.


"The committee was satisfied with the evidence that the MP had ill intention to disrespect the Parliament before Tanzanians who have trust in the law making organ," said the chairperson.


In proposing that the MP be suspended, Mwakasaka cited section 33(1) of the Standing Orders which states that where any member commits any contempt of the Assembly whether specified in section 26 or otherwise, the Assembly may, by resolution, either direct the Speaker to reprimand such member or suspend him or her for such period as it may determine.




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