On Thursday, October 12, 2023, the Deputy Speaker, Mr. Thomas Tayebwa, had to temporarily halt proceedings in the Parliament due to a heated dispute concerning a video that allegedly contained defamatory statements made by Mityana Municipality MP, Mr. Francis Zaake, against Rakai Woman MP, Juliet Kinyamatama.
Ms. Kinyamatama had initially requested Parliament’s intervention regarding the alleged actions and derogatory statements made by Mr. Zaake on October 9 during a rally held in her constituency in Rakai District. She insisted that the video be played during the session, but this request led to a commotion among the Members of Parliament (MPs). Some MPs supported the idea, while others opposed it.
Mr. Tayebwa, the Deputy Speaker, initially ruled to refer the matter to the Parliament’s Rules, Privileges, and Discipline Committee. This committee would have been responsible for reviewing all the video clips and other evidence related to the incident. However, Ms. Kinyamatama vehemently objected to this decision, declaring, “An attack on me is an attack on all women.” Her statement triggered uproar among the MPs, with some insisting on playing the video in the House, and others objecting to this proposal. As a result of the escalating tension, the plenary session was temporarily suspended.
A summary of the events is presented in the table below:
|October 12, 2023
|Plenary suspended due to a dispute over a defamatory video involving MPs Zaake and Kinyamatama.
|October 9, 2023
|Alleged defamatory remarks made by MP Zaake against MP Kinyamatama during a rally in Rakai District.
|Ms. Kinyamatama requested that the video be played during the session, leading to a split among MPs.
The situation remains unresolved, and further discussions are expected as Parliament addresses the controversy.