By William Madouk Garang
Members of Parliament at the Central Equatoria State’s Transitional Legislative Assembly have opposed and pushed back a report compiled by Specialized Committee for Gender, Child Social Welfare during their courtesy visit to State Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare.
The objection came after the Acting Chairperson of the Assembly Standing Specialized Committee for Gender, Child, Social Welfare, Human Right and Humanitarian Affairs, Maka Mustafa Fataki tabled the report before the August House on Monday 20th June 2022.
The rejected report was compiled in accordance with Article 56 (F) of the State Interim Constitution as amended, read together with regulation 138 (7) of State Assembly Conduct of Business Regulations which grant specialized committee to acquaint itself with activities and the ongoing developmental plans within the State ministries.
However, the House overruled to deliberate on the report with 46 votes in favor of terming the report as ‘scanty’ and ‘inadequate’ that requires more work, while on the other hand 14 legislators voted against the objection while 5 votes were neutral.
“The results of votes: the honourable members who are supporting the first motion of deliberation on this report are 14, and the honourable members who are in support of objection of this report are 46 and neutral members are 5. So, the report is objected by the house,” CES Rt. Hon. Speaker Peter Wani Kulang announced to the House ruling on the motion.
Speaking to journalists after the session, the Chairperson for Service and Members Affairs, Hellen Denya Marko said the report was sent back by the House simply because there were some vital information that were left out.
“The report was read but the honorable members of August House sent the report back for the State Minister and committee to work together, to include other issues of the ministry which are left out. So, that the report will come out as an accurate report for ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare,” Hellen emphasized.
“In the report there is a lot of issues of the ministry missed out, they [only] focused on administrative issues rather than to look into the issues of the ministry, i.e. what the ministry of Gender is supposed to do,” she added.
Lawmaker Hellen stressed that they are expecting the report to be re-tabled before the House again in a week or two weeks’ time for the members to deliberate on and find way forward.
MP Joy Keji during the sitting raised a motion to oppose the report arguing that the report was inconclusive as well as it did not include the field visit findings made by the team to internally displaced persons (IDPs) camp in Gumbo.
“Hon. Maka is supposed to compile all the report and bring it all to us – to this August House, last month Hon. Maka visited IDPs in Gumbo/Sheriket – so she’s supposed to give us all the report,” she underlined.
“In that visit to IDP camp in Gumbo/Sherikat there is a child there, there is a woman and also vulnerable persons there which are within her jurisdiction. So, this House is supposed to hear the whole report” Keji reiterated.
Elizabeth, another legislator who opposed the motion also said the report was narrow and it was more of tackling ‘administrative issues’ which is not their mandate as lawmakers.
“I rise here to second the motion raised by Hon. Keji because if you look into this report, it’s more of administrative issues, the vehicles, and the premises this is not our mandate,” she stressed.
“We are here to look into the report of the ministry – the total report, and even the minister is supposed to be here to present gender policy framework. Not this report what are you going do with repairing of minister’s vehicles – is it our mandate, it’s not,” Elizabeth disputed.