WINDHOEK - Speaker of the National Assembly, Professor Peter Katjivivi has rebutted claims of impartiality made by opposition PDM leader McHenry Venaani who also accused him for apparently overstepping boundaries. This happened when the Speaker praised President Hage Geingob on the role he has played in Africa and internationally during the opening of Parliament last month.
The speaker questioned what the alleged impartiality had to do with the comments he made about the President. “In that particular article, the leader of the official opposition, Honourable Venaani, was quoted as having accused me of lacking impartiality. However, what followed in the next paragraph of that article was a verbatim quotation of what I had said about the President during the official opening of Parliament,” stated Katjavivi.
He said his remarks about the role played by the president at continental and international levels has nothing to do with the perceived ‘impartiality.’
“The impartiality or partiality of the speaker can only come into play when there is a normal session of Parliament with debate(s). This was the official opening of Parliament and there was no debate,” explained the speaker.
Furthermore, Katjivivi pointed out that, “As Speaker of the National Assembly, I am the head of one of the three organs of the state and therefore, I do not take instructions from anyone, including Hon. Venaani.”
“I would like to remind Hon. Venaani that. I have on previous occasions commended Hon. Venaani and other Members of the House when they have been elected to official positions in the Pan African Parliament. It is entirely appropriate to do so,” he further stated in the rebuttal.
Katjavivi reiterated the fact that for him to serve as the speaker, he was elected unanimously by Members of the National Assembly. He further commended the President on serving as Chairman of Sadc and dealing with regional matters, as well as commending him on having been recently recognised by the UN Secretary-General for his role on matters related to UN reform endeavours.
“The president is our head of state, having been elected by a huge majority of our citizenry,” said Katjavivi. The speaker also said it is in keeping with parliamentary tradition to extend courtesy and respect towards the president and he hopes Venaani will honour and appreciate that tradition.
2019-03-06 10:11:19 5 months ago