Diplomatic passports for spouses questioned…MPs feeling left out

Martin Endjala

The new implementation of diplomatic passports for Police Generals and Correctional Services Commissioners including all security clusters and Standing Committee Chairpersons as well as their spouses does not sit well with Popular Democratic Movement parliamentarian Elma Dienda, who says it is unacceptable as it leaves out crucial members of Parliament such as the Deputy Speaker.

The implementation was I nitiated by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration Safety and Security and furthermore accords diplomatic passports to the President and the First Lady, Vice-President, Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, and spouses. Dienda said National Assembly and National Council officials are neglected in that regard.

“What is wrong with our government, how can you recognize spouses and neglect the parliament? I have no issue with the spouse of the president, Vice-President and the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, but how can you have a Deputy speaker of the National Assembly not listed and concentrate on spouses of Police Generals and Correctional Services Commissioners including all security clusters and Standing Committee Chairpersons,” the Popular Democratic Movement’s Chief Whip, Elma Dienda said during the resumption of the parliamentary session last week.

A question was posed to the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Immigration Safety, and Security Daniel Kashikola concerning the matter of the new implementation and how it was conducted.

Dienda said that such implementation which neglects the National Assembly and the National Council is unacceptable and will not be allowed.

“It must be nullified as it failed to heed the spirit of inclusivity, and transparency given the fact that the document was leaked and had it not been, the matter would not have been in the open,” Dienda stressed.

In response, the National Assembly Speaker Peter Katjavivi said he will take the liberty to address this situation, adding that it is an important matter which is affects the work of the parliament.

Katjavivi added that he acknowledges the sentiments echoed by the members of parliament and has since put in a notice to see the President to understand the matter and the rationale of such implementation.

“I have taken it upon myself to look into this matter because it affects both the NA and NC, we are part of the three organs of state, and it is important when something like this occurs before it is implemented, we ought to be consulted and to be part and parcel of the discussions,” said the Speaker.

The Speaker called for calmness, given the fact that he is still in the process of getting to the bottom of the matter. He reiterated that he would give feedback on the matter once consultations are complete.

The names of former Presidents and their spouses including former Prime Ministers and Deputy Prime Ministers are also on the list.

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