Odongo Odoyo

Topical Commentary

With Odongo Odoyo

I came across media reports that our members of parliament were not present anywhere both at the parliament building and at the Freedom Hall which they have been using to give room for renovation of the august house. This exercise has taken a bit longer time to complete. However, the point is that some students’ leaders were also looking for people’s representatives to squire something out with the leaders. The students were unable to find them. It is said that when the health insurance token of 25,000 USD came handy, the MPs disappeared into thin air. They were nowhere to discharge their required responsibilities and were out of sight and reach of many. Sometimes it is argued that it is better to plan in isolation. May be this is what the honorable members are doing because “not planning is planning to fail” which should not catch our honorable members by surprise. Probably, they have to plan properly not to fail in their mission. One of my friends told me that some students from University of Juba were on the war path baying for the blood of the legislators. Their anger was how this could be possible at this time and while just not long ago they had a comfortable “loan” of 40,000 USD which they were yet to repay to the country’s coffer. I told my friend that l was not competent enough to discuss matters of the legislative assembly and that it was the decision well taken by parliament which was one of the three arms of the government. I told my friend to relax since every situation has a situation and reasons to prove the cause of action. This seems to have cooled down my friend’s temper but not the students who were thinking and talking aloud that this kind of money could do a lot to improve the education standard both at the lower and higher level. They are of the opinion that the MPs do not deserve the money at the moment but since they had been given there should be a properly coordinated system to ensure that what belong to the states was given back even if it will take a longer period of time to repay. They wanted to believe that the money was given in form of loan so that the legislators would be held responsible by the national coffer to account for it if and when time comes. The students argued that time had come when the system of depending on free gifts should go to be replaced with well-designed system in which everyone who has or will be asking to be given something from the public coffer must be able to be responsible and able to be transparent within himself and the country at large. These students had some logic which needs to be purified, cleaned and put in place to protect the national interests now and in the future. Can this system be tried, but the doubt is high that the legislators who received the token would go side by side with it.

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