Polls monitors called on all MPs to utilize Private Members’ Bills and Motions to intervene to address real issues faced by the people as there was no hindrance to or limitation imposed on using such to tackle problems.
Whilst acknowledging that it was political parties that decide on the time allocated for MPs to speak which could practically result in back row MPs being allotted insufficient time and being given subjects to speak on at the last minute sans adequate time for preparation, polls monitor, People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) noted that MPs if they were actually sensitive to matters affecting the public would be enthusiastic and dedicated in making use of Private Members’ Motions and Bills.
Executive Director of PAFFREL, Rohana Hettiarachchi remarked that there were MPs including senior ones and those who had come in through national lists, who had spoken only once or twice for the entire duration of the Parliament’s term.
He also added that sometimes such MPs whose participation in what is their primary responsibility and duty to law and policy-making is wholly lacking, may however be popular in their seats and electorates, due to the distribution of resources and development activities they engage in at the village level.
“Are the MPs, especially female ones and young ones, making an honest effort to obtain time slots for speeches by continuously bringing these matters up before the political parties in question, especially the main ones?” he queried.