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Two MPs to testify over legislators sugar probe bribery claims

Mercy Mwai @wangumarci

Two members of the National Assembly have been listed  among those to testify over  bribery claims levelled against legislators in respect to contraband sugar probe.

The two, Didmus Barasa (Kimilili) and Onyango K’Oyoo (Muhoroni) are set to appear before the Powers and Privileges Committee to give their side of the story even as the committee commences its probe on September 5.

In a communication to the House, National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi said he had singled out the two MPs because they are members of the Powers and Privileges committee and are on record to have made the bribery allegations.

“The member for Kimilili Constituency Didmus Barasa, and his Muhoroni counterpart, Onyango K’Oyoo, who are members of the Committee of Powers and Privileges of the National Assembly and who are reported to have made allegations of bribery will have to recuse themselves from the sittings until the committee has concluded the inquiry on the allegations of possible bribery,” he said.

Muturi also told the members that some of them who have publicly alluded to having witnessed incidences of bribery by their peers will be required to appear before the committee which he chairs to assist the  get to the bottom of the allegation.

He said the MPs will appear as whistleblowers and will be required to give their evidence on what they know about the matter.

And although he promised the members a fair hearing, he reminded them that they must act with integrity that borders infallibility in order to protect the functions the House which are carried out through committees whose status is akin to that of a High Court.

He made the revelations even as ruled out any plans to bring back debate on the sugar report that was rejected by the House on August 9.

In his communication, the Speaker said doing so will offend the provisions of Standing Order 49 since the discretion of the Speaker to grant leave on such motions does not extend to a Report of a Committee which has been adopted or rejected by way of a conscious vote.

He said the power of rescission has been exercised only in the case of a resolution resulting from a substantive motion, and even then sparingly.