PF Chairperson for Information and Publicity Raphael Nakacinda and his witnesses yesterday opted not to return to the Parliamentary Committee on Privileges, Absences, and Support Services hearing, after being asked to break for three minutes.

This is a matter in which the Committee summoned Nakacinda to appear before it, following a point of order which was raised by Lukulu East UPND member of parliament Dr Christopher Kalila over a story published in the Daily Nation headlined, “Stop being Emotional, Nakacinda tells Speaker”.

Addressing journalists after appearing at Parliament, Thursday, Nakacinda said the committee was afraid to present evidence that he was offside when he expressed himself.

“This business of wanting to use rules of Parliament to intimidate members of the public should be a thing of the past. I am hoping that through this matter, Parliament will be called to order. This is the people’s Assembly and it is not above reproach. Madam Speaker, in her execution of duties on the floor of the House is not above reproach. We are using tax payer’s money to have deliberations broadcasted. Our democracy is put to test in this Assembly. I reluctantly came here out of courtesy. We get into a committee that is afraid to put what they are alleging to strict proof of evidence,” said Nakacinda.

“Dr Kalila is saying that I may have gone against the persona of Madam Speaker when I commented about some of the decisions and rulings she made in the House. We are demanding for them to avail all those things so that we can examine whether I was offside in expressing myself.”

Meanwhile, former Deputy Chief Whip Tutwa Ngulube, who is Nakacinda’s witness, said they decided not to return to the meeting because they needed to formally request the National Assembly to avail evidence of the Speaker’s rulings.

“We have just come out of the committee on privileges that summoned Nakacinda over his opinion on how honorable Madam Speaker dealt with honorable member for Kabushi Bowman Lusambo. We appeared to have a problem in the committee because it appears they do not want to guide us whether they now have powers to prosecute members of the public who say anything about Madam Speaker. My reading of that article by Nakacinda shows he was giving his opinion. The deputy clerk of procedure Madam Sikatele is refusing and she does not want us to get clarity. They want to proceed like a kangaroo court where everything has already been said and you just have to defend yourself. So we have refused,” said Ngulube.

“So we have actually we’ve been told to go outside for three minutes and said we will call you. My brother Makebi Zulu requested to have the footage of the proceedings and a video of what was said. They have told us they will not give us the footage. They assume we already have the video of what was said on the floor of the House. So we have been told to go outside but we told them we are leaving to go and formally write and request for the things we need. We want to know how to proceed because they’re trading dangerously and trampling on the rights of honourable Nakacinda. So are they saying when you say ‘Madam Speaker was emotional’, have you insulted the whole Parliament? So they are citing a law that does not give them power to do what they are trying to do.”