A South Sudan lawmaker belonging to the main armed opposition Sudan People's Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) has claimed that the transitional legislative assembly is collapsing, accusing the speaker, Jemma Nunu Kumba, of spending most of her time on unproductive and expensive trips abroad.
JUBA – A South Sudan lawmaker belonging to the main armed opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) has claimed that the transitional legislative assembly is collapsing, accusing the speaker, Jemma Nunu Kumba, of spending most of her time on unproductive and expensive trips abroad.
In a statement, Juol Nhomngek, a lawmaker representing Cueibet County of Lakes State on the ticket of the SPLM-IO, said the law-making institution is collapsing citing leadership disintegration caused by unilateral decision making ego by the speaker.
“The Parliament is almost collapsing as the leadership has completely disintegrated. For the last few months, the speaker is the only person making decisions for the Parliament,” Nhomngek said in a statement he compiled on behalf of other lawmakers.
While revealing that there is no approval of parliamentary expenditure by lawmakers, Nhomngek said speaker Kumba has been spending his times mostly on expensive, yet unproductive trips, to foreign countries while elderly members of parliament are suffering from treatable illnesses .
“The Parliament has only become the Parliament of trips as trips have become source of money where millions of dollars are being spent on unproductive trips. There is no approval for the expenditure of the Parliament. The Speaker creates trips whenever the come,” he said.
“This has affected all departments of the Parliament. Thus workers in the Parliament are not being paid and other services are not being delivered for several months. The elderly members of Parliament do not even have access to medication because the Parliament has overspent its budget on mostly on the trips of speaker and her cliques,” he added.
He alleged that members of the August House are not being allowed to speak against the policies of speaker, something he said undermine the mandate given to them as representatives of the people of South Sudan by the constitution.
“The Parliament is no longer free for members to speak and so the representation of the citizens is just illusion. As we speaker now the Parliament does not have printing papers and ink not because of the lack of money but because Speaker is using all means to get the money for her private activities,” he said.
“The Speaker and the clerk are doing one thing just to make sure that Parliament does not operate normally but they want Parliament to operate as they wished so that their interest is served,” the outspoken lawmaker added.
He accused the speaker of working to “destroy” young members of parliament by dividing them up, but vowed to keep fighting on even if that would mean calling for the SPLM in Government to replace her and bring in a new person.
“Finally, the Speaker is now working hard to destroy the Young Parliamentary caucus as it has set up the Parallel body apart from the interim body that was formed by young Parliamentarians,” the opposition lawmaker said.
“In conclusion, we ordinary members have agreed to stage the full war against the Speaker in the Parliament either to ensure that Parliament works in implementing the Revitalized Agreement or we ask the SPLM-IG to bring another speaker who shall work for their interest,” he added.
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