Somalis MPs in punch up in parliament over budget funds

by GW Reporter

Wajir East MP  Rashid Kassim was Thursday arrested for allegedly assaulting Wajir Woman Representative Fatuma Gedi within Parliament precincts. 

The incident happened at the Parliament parking lot as the woman representative was walking to Protection House in the company of her Homa Bay county counterpart, Gladys Wanga.

Witnesses said the male MP punched Gedi who sits in the House Budget and Appropriations committee for allegedly failing to push for money for his constituency.

Speaker of the National Assembly, Justin Muturi in a communication from the Chair asked the police to expedite investigation into the incident.

“The matter has been reported at Parliament police station. I have given strict instructions that criminals cannot be harboured in Parliament. A crime is a crime. I have directed that the police may go to whatever extent to investigate and if necessary, arrest, and charge before court whoever is found to be culpable,” said Muturi.

The Speaker said this was not a matter protected by parliamentary privilege as parliament cannot be a sanctuary for criminals.

“Even if you disagree, it cannot be a reason or excuse to engage in criminal activities. These are my directions to the police they must deal with the matter firmly, because nobody is above the law,” said Muturi, who had a difficult time controlling women MPs who sang and chanted in the chamber demanding for action against their offending male colleague.

“We now fear for our safety in Parliament,” said Lamu women representative Ruweida Obbo who stood up to alert the House of the matter as her fellow women MPs sang songs condemning their offending colleague.

“Today is a very sad day not only for women parliamentarians but for all women in this country. As we walked from Parliament to Protection House, we ran into Kassim who then engaged in a conversation with Gedi. I did not hear what they were discussing, but before long, I heard him utter the word ‘stupid’ before descending on my colleague with blows,” said Mrs Wanga 

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