Parties stopped from removing rebel MPs from House committees

Parties have been stopped from removing rebel Members of Parliament from House committees until they show that they informed them beforehand and gave them an opportunity to be heard.

But with seven months to the General Election and House business slowing down, the ruling by Speaker Justin Muturi could be too late to save the more than 10 opposition MPs who are no longer in committees.

Mr Muturi asked the committee handling proposed changes to the House rules to expedite the matter and table a report on the changes to the Standing Orders.

A party Whip will now be required to show that the MP they want removed was given adequate notice of the intention and a chance to respond.

“In this regard, it is not for the Speaker to dictate either who will constitute the panel or its procedure, but suffice it to say that some form of a hearing must have taken place,” said Mr Muturi.


He said until the National Assembly comes up with the process to remove an MP from a committee, no discharges will be allowed if the two conditions above are not met.

“In the meantime, I request the members of the (Procedure and House Rules) committee to ensure that the report on the consideration of these concerns is tabled soonest to allow the House to substantively consider the recommendations arrived at and deal with this recurring concern,” Mr Muturi added.

Removing rebel MPs from parliamentary committees is a form of punishment used by the opposition to remove those who have defected to the ruling Jubilee coalition.

It robs an MP of the opportunity to vote on issues at committees and, financially, to make the Sh5,000 paid as sitting allowance when one attends a committee meeting.

Unless they contribute to debate on the floor of the chamber, they would have their workload reduced considerably.

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