MPs’ SIS Nod Sparks Uproar

source: allAfrica
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

March 29, 2007
Posted to the web March 30, 2007

Bame Piet

Batswana have expressed disappointment with their Members of Parliament (MPs) for failing to stop the controversial Security and Intelligence Services Bill (SIS), which passed the second reading on Monday.

The Executive Branch was able to score 25 votes against 16 from ordinary MPs while 17 others were absent from the House. This happened because some MPs do not care about parliamentary debates, preferring to attend to their private affairs or kill time at the Parliamentary Bar. In some instances, debates had to be suspended because the MPs could not form a quorum – 21 out of the 63. The Bill was withdrawn from Parliament last November after an outcry that there was need for an oversight body to avoid any possible abuse of SIS by the authorities.

Some MPs, who were then on the backbench, have been promoted and have since changed their stance. As a result, they are pushing for the adoption of the Bill, which means it will soon come up for third and final reading.

Commenting on the “sad turn of events”, Botswana Council of Non-Governmental Organisations (BOCONGO) [continue reading]




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