The Speaker, Anita Annet Among, has said that Parliament will start publishing the attendance of Members of Parliament and ministers as part of the accountability to the constituents.
In her communication to the House on Tuesday, 20 June 2023, Among said that the legislators’ attendance will now be monitored using biometrics as a way of improving their participation and performance.
“We are making sure that biometric finger logins are working and next week, we shall publish the attendance and the performance of the last session,” said Among.
The Speaker said that this will be a standard measure of performance and a tool for ensuring MPs’ accountability to their constituents.
“We are here to do accountability for people we represent; we should be accountable for whatever we do in this House,” Among said.
She added that the biometrics will also be used to track attendance in committee meetings which are the core avenues for Parliament business.
She re-echoed her call made at the 2023 State of the Nation Address and Budget Day urging MPs to be mindful of the time left for the 11th Parliament to deliver on its promise.
“As we embark on this Third session, I want to give you a kind reminder. We have only two years left to work towards achieving a people-centred Parliament. We also have to work towards coming back to Parliament,” Among said.
Attendance of Parliament by ministers and MPs has over time been an issue with both the public and some legislators raising concerns.
This has at times seen the business of the House stall due to the absence of sector ministers to respond to reports or statements.
The presiding officers have in some cases been forced to adjourn the sittings of the House prematurely due to the absence of ministers.