Watch fights, scuffles and paper throwing in Kenyan Parliament

Video: Opposition lawmakers disrupted a vote on Thursday over terrorism-related measures

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Westminster, eat your heart out. The most raucous moment of yesterday's Prime Minister's Questions was when David Cameron called Ed Miliband a "waste of space".

In Kenya, the opposition party decided that words just were not powerful enough to express their displeasure at new terrorism-related laws. So they yelled, tore up papers and shouted down the speaker of the country's parliament.

The speaker, Justin Muturi, had to suspend the session on Thursday and said it would resume later in the day.

As scuffles broke out in the chamber, journalists were barred from the parliament's press gallery and the live transmission was discontinued.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has faced growing pressure to boost security since an attack on Nairobi's Westgate mall in September 2013 that left 67 people dead.

The bill he has sent to parliament would allow terrorism suspects to be held without charge for 360 days, compel landlords to provide information about their tenants and punish media organisations for printing material that is "likely to cause fear or alarm".

"There was disagreement inside the chamber over whether to continue to pass the bill or not and ... it degenerated into chaos," said Mohamed Junet, an opposition member of parliament.

Kenya's opposition and civil rights activists believe the new laws would threaten civil liberties and free speech in the African nation.