This follows a dramatic incident that ensued in the National Assembly of Kenya after the country’s Kwale Woman Representative, Zuleikha Hassan was reportedly sent out of the chamber on the morning of Wednesday, August 7 for carrying her baby into the chamber.
According to Tuko.co.ke, acting Speaker Chris Omulele ordered the nursing lawmaker out of the legislature, claiming her decision to bring her baby to the house was in breach parliamentary procedure.
Although Zuleikha Hassan pleaded to not be driven out in such a humiliating manner considering the fact that the Kenyan parliament itself has failed to make provision for women in her condition, the sergeant-at-arms did not hesitate to enforce the directive of the speaker.
She told news men outside parliament that she had an emergency, and it was not prudent to leave her baby at home.
The mother of 3 lamented how the Parliamentary Service Commission failed to comply with a bill passed in 2013 which stipulates that a breastfeeding unit be established to allow lactating legislators to bring their children to Parliament.
"I had an emergency today and I had to come with the baby. There was a rule in 2013 we build a space for babies and breastfeeding services and family friendly offices. She is still breastfeeding and I want her to breastfeed her as much as it is required. This is my third child. I have never done this before. It is like I have been punished for having child.
“The PSC passed a bill in August 2013, providing that we travel with care givers when going for sittings and meetings besides a room. A baby is a normal part of life of a woman," Zuleikha Hassan is quoted as saying.
Before she was sent out of parliament, two of her colleagues, Homa Bay MP Opondo Kaluma and his Alego Usonga counterpart Samuel Atandi had challenged the speaker’s directive, asking Zuleikha Hassan to not leave.
Opondo Kaluma argued: "If you are a Member of Parliament who is breastfeeding, in the best interest of that child, the child cannot be separated from you when you are in the course of your duty in the Assembly.”
However, the honourable member was dragged out forcibly as she tried to stop parliamentary orderlies from taking her out respectfully.
Today, it has happened in Kenya and everybody is talking about it. Does parliament of Ghana have breastfeeding unit? It will not be surprising if that was not even factored in the botched outrageous second chamber.