The APC deputy majority leader in parliament, Sheku Badara Bashiru Dumbuya, has said it is an entitlement for members of parliament to carry diplomatic passports.
In an interview with Awoko about the need for MP to carry diplomatic passports, Hon. Dumbuya said it was the right of MPs to carry it regarding their status.
“It is our right and I feel we are entitled to carry it having regard to our status as members of parliament,” he said.
He called it ridiculous for them to approve ministers and other high ranking officials who were accorded diplomatic passports but they who were voted for were made to use service passports.
After the 1996 elections MPs used diplomatic passports but the procedure was changed after the 2002 elections to service passports.
Hon Dumbuya said they made a request to the last government to be given diplomatic passport but that it was turned down.
On the notion that giving diplomatic passports to those whose backgrounds were not known, more so those from the Diaspora might lead to the misuse of it, he replied that “no, how can they say that. You give a diplomatic passport to MPs simply because they deserved it and they would definitely not misuse it”.
“An MP is an honourable person voted for which makes him/her a respectable person that is aware of the dignities carries wherever they go. It is an insult to the dignity of parliament for people to think of MPs will misuse the diplomatic passport,” he stated.
Hon. Dumbuya explained that arrangements were on for the process and that the mandate had to come from State House.