By Umaru Kashaka
There was a mild drama in the natural resources committee of parliament on Thursday after the National Forestry Authority (NFA) executive director, Michael Mugisha and his team were ordered to go back for late comming.
Legislators led by the committee chairperson the Bungokho South MP, Michael Werikhe, argued that there was no way they could go ahead with the meeting when it’s already plenary time (12:40pm).
“No! We are not going to meet today because surely we are time bad. We have another meeting from here and there is plenary also. So I adjourn the meeting to Tuesday next week,” Werikhe ruled amid pleas from the officials.
Mugisha, who had arrived before mid-day but went back to pick his documents including his written responses, resurfaced at about 12: 40pm looking tired.
He had pleaded for at least 10 minutes to give highlights of his statement.
“I’m so sorry I have arrived late, but please give me a few minutes to address some of your concerns. The issue of forests is very important,” he implored vainly.
Some visibly perturbed committee members wondered how the NFA boss and his team could forget the statement they were to present to them, noting that they only wanted to buy time to finalize their statement.
“Let them go back. How can you go in the garden to dig without the hoe? They knew very well that they were coming here, but how they left the documents behind in the first place beats my understanding,” one legislator wondered.
The MPs had earlier on interfaced with officials from the National Environment Management Authority over their budget framework paper for the next financial year.
The NFA officials were expected to provide responses to the issues raised by the committee on the national budget framework paper for financial year 2014/15.