Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Mityana Municipality Member of Parliament, Francis Zaake has accused Makerere University Vice Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe of undermining parliament. He was appearing before the Rules, Discipline and Privileges Committee of parliament to defend himself against allegations of harassing Nawangwe and behaving without decorum.
It came after Nawangwe appeared before the Education Committee of parliament last month following student’s protests over the implementation of the 15 percent tuition increment policy. It is alleged that during the meeting, Zaake pointed fingers at Nawangwe threatening the strikes at the University would continue as long as he doesn’t change his attitude.
He also reportedly accused Nawangwe of carrying a firearm and using his spy girlfriends to intimidate students. However, while appearing before he Rules, Discipline and Privileges Committee of parliament, which is investigating the incident, Zaake denied the allegations leveled against him.
He claimed that Nawangwe was trying to draw the public away from the critical issue at Makerere University. Zaake told the committee that he was only playing his role as a legislator when they interfaced with Nawangwe amidst obstruction from the chair who kept switching him off and differed his questions, saying they would be answered later.
He also claimed that after the committee meeting, Nawangwe approached him and told him parliament was only a barking dog that would do nothing.
According to Zaake, parliament should have never lost focus from the poor management of the University and turned on him. He also said he cannot be made to prove the allegations of intimidation made by students against Nawangwe.
Zaake told the committee that it appears Nawangwe has personal issues against him.
However, some MPs put it to Zaake that his conduct was wanting. Apollo Masika, the Bubolo County East MP, said it is unfortunate that a young man like Zaake behaved the way he did. He said that even during the age limit fracas at Parliament, Zaake was at the center of throwing chairs.
Stella Namoe Nyomera, the Napak Woman MP, said Zaake’s conduct was uncalled for and did not yield anything for the committee. He said Zaake’s gesture and approach to Nawangwe was unbecoming.
The Committee Chair, Clement Obote Ongalo faulted Zaake for attacking Nawangwe for failing to answer his questions, saying he had also failed to answer questions raised by the committee.
He said the committee will now concentrate on scrutinizing the submissions of the members and write a report.