Written by A MARAPOST CORRESPONDENT
MZUZU--Malawi’ ruling People’s Party (PP) is unhappy with the decision by Speaker of Parliament Henry Chimunthu Banda to invoke Section 65 of the Constitution which affected its lawmaker.
Banda declared the seat of Blantyre Bangwe legislator Henry Mpofu Shaba vacant after concluding that he’d breached the constitution by joining another party represented in parliament. He became the first victim of the disputed provision.
Opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) had petitioned the Speaker on June 19, 2012 making the case that the legislator who was elected to Parliament on UDF ticket had crossed the floor when left to join former ruling DPP and later PP.
But PP's publicist Ken Msonda has questioned the Speaker's timing.
Said Msonda: “We believe in a democratic dispensation…However it raises eyebrows as to why the Speaker did not rule on Section 65 on Hon H.M. Shaba and others during the DPP administration.”
But in the same breath, Msonda said the Speaker was correct in his decision.
“Section 65 is part of our Republican Constitution concerning one arm of government; Legislature. UDF petitioned the Speaker when Hon H.M. Shaba joined DPP and the Parliamentarian never obtained an injunction to prevent the Speaker from ruling on Section 65.”
UDF had sought similar action by the Speaker on Energy Minister Ibrahim Matola. The Speaker however said Matola, who currently is outside the country, had to be given a chance to make his case.
For Shaba's story, click here
© The Maravi Post 2013