The Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga has directed the Eastern Youth legislator Ismael Mafabi to attend the next parliamentary sitting, warning that he will lose his seat over rampant absenteeism.
Chairing the Thursday sitting, Kadaga announced said Mafabi has been absent without official leave for more than 15 consecutive Parliamentary sittings, which contravenes the rules of procedure of the House.
She said Mafabi has only attended one sitting since his entry into the 10th Parliament.
According to records, the legislator last attended the parliamentary sitting on the 20th of December 2017 during the voting on the controversial Constitutional Amendment Bill 2017 where he voted in favour of the removal of the presidential age limit.
Kadaga said Mafabi had absconded from attending committee proceedings and other activities of the parliament.
According to rule 111(6) of the rules of procedure, except with the permission of the speaker, a member of Parliament shall not absent himself or herself from 15 or more sittings of the House during any period when the House is continuously sitting.
It is said that Speaker Kadaga went as far as summoning the once very powerful NRM Sironko district Chairman Suleiman Lumolo who is also a leading city tycoon dealing mostly in the importation of new and used Japan vehicles into Uganda. He is famously more known as the proprietor of Kampala Modernity car bond based in Bugolobi near NFA.
In 2016, his son Ishmael Mafabi became the youth MP Eastern region on the independent ticket after realizing there would be no fairness in the NRM primaries. As MP, younger Mafabi hasn’t performed well and has consequently let down many people including his own father Suleiman Lumolo who spent close to Shs1bn funding his campaign activities. The young man hasn’t only failed to make any impact or visibility in the house but has also been the biggest culprit of absenteeism for which Kadaga had some time back threatened to expel some MPs.
Sometime last year, a record of offending MPs was drawn for the Speaker and when she saw Mafabi was top on the list, she became sympathetic and summoned his father in the spirit of being a fellow NRM figure. “He is supposed to be reprimanded but we are restraining ourselves because he is your son but please get the time and speak to him,” Kadaga reportedly told Suleiman Lumolo who too had already taken long without hearing from his son.
Commenting on his absenteeism, Mafabi said “I will go to the speaker’s office and tender in my apology”
Some of the legislators who have lost their seats for dodging parliamentary sittings on more than 15 times are Tony Kipoi the former legislator for Bubulo west and Gen. David Sejusa aka Tinyefunza after he fled to the United Kingdom in 2013.