By Anna Chibamu
Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Mudenda Wednesday told legislators that he finds himself like he was in a polygamous kind of relationship by trying to please rival Zanu PF and MDC MPs at the same time, while performing his Parliamentary business.
Mudenda is also a Zanu PF Politburo member.
The Speaker said this after he was forced to apologise for roughing up Mutare Central MP Innocent Gonese.
Mudenda had stopped Gonese from making a contribution.
The ruling to bar Gonese did not go down well with the Mutare Central MP, who raised a Point of Order and told the Speaker he felt the Zanu PF politician was violating his rights.
He went on to accuse Mudenda of being biased against MDC MPs while giving preferential treatment to Zanu PF legislators.
“I am talking about my rights as a Member of Parliament for Mutare Central. I am talking about my rights and I do not know which same matter you are talking about,” Gonese, who felt that he had been told to sit down because he was an MDC Alliance legislator, said.
He said despite Mudenda being a senior Zanu PF official, the Speaker should be impartial when carrying out his Parliamentary duties.
Gonose was also bitter that during debate in the House, Mudenda chose to let five Zanu PF MPs make contributions at the expense of MDC MPs instead of following procedure that allows three Zanu PF MPs at any given time against one legislator from the MDC.
“You recognised five MPs from the other side. For me that is a manifestation of bias, failure to exercise the role of Speaker. Mr. Speaker, Sir, I want to mention that you do not vote in Parliament even if there was a tie, the reason being that you are supposed to practice tranquillity.
“The point I am making in this house is that members should be allowed to articulate their points to their logical conclusion.
“I believe that the manner in which you have been discharging the roles of a Speaker is not in accordance with the conventions, practices and procedures the world over,” said Gonese.
The objection by Gonese forced Mudenda to eat humble pie and apologise to the MDC Secretary for Legal Affairs.
“Firstly I would like to apologise to Honourable Gonese. The member says he has some perceptions. I and my officers have to observe the balance (of Zanu PF/MDC MPs making contributions) in this House. It is three to one. Now we have to observe that ratio.
“Munofanira kuziva kana uine two wives, kune vaHosi and the other. Ehe barika rinonetsa! (You have to understand that if one is in a polygamous relationship, there is always the first wife and and second wife. It is a difficult relationship),” said Mudenda amid applause from both Zanu PF and MDC MPs.