Your tax money wasted on absentee politicians

Lahiru Fernando

COLOMBO (News 1st): When election season draws closer politicians walking the streets of his/her constituency with a whole group of supporters is a very common sight. Politicians make promises, drawing up colorful hopes & dreams in the minds of the people. However, post-election, those promises remain exactly the same, as mere hopes & dreams.

Why does that happen? Is it because they are incapable of doing what they promised? Is it because they simply don’t have the time to do it?

This could be the reason why attendance of MPs for parliamentary sessions is at such a low level. Let’s break down the numbers for the months of April May and June.

  • April 5th and 6th: 50% of MPs absent.
  • May: There were 8 parliament days in the month of May. 2 of them had an absent percentage of 60%, while most of the other days barring the 8th and the 9th had an absent percentage of over 30%.
  • June: Parliament was in session on 7 days and the consistently the absent rate was over 25%. Interestingly 50% of the MPs were not in Parliament on the 8th if June.

On average, 54% of the MPs have not participated in parliamentary sessions on Fridays.

MP attendance stats in Parliament on Fridays

A large amount of taxpayer money is pumped in to maintain the day to day activities of Parliament including paying an attendance allowance for our public representatives. Based on the where the MP lives, a fuel allowance is also paid for him/her to attend parliamentary sessions.

A total of Rs. 4.5 million is spent on a daily basis for the activities of Parliament, that means the taxpayer doles out around Rs. 20,000 for each MP.

Why are the politicians so eager to get elected to parliament if they are not interested in attending parliamentary sessions? Maybe they have forgotten that the people elected them to serve the people, not themselves.

We report. You decide.