Guidelines for President question style-session: Chakwera to answer 5 questions from MPS

National Assembly has adopted  guidelines on the procedure to be followed in asking the Malawi leader questions as President Lazarus Chakwera is set to be the country’s second leader to face His Excellency’s Question Time (HEQs) style-session from Members of parliament this coming Thursday in Lilongwe.

Chakwera: The second Head of State among five in the multiparty era to appear before Parliament to answer questions as provided for in the Constitution. The first was Bakili Muluzi.

First president in the multiparty era, Bakili Muluzi, was the first to face the then Leader of Opposition Gwanda Chakuamba in an exciting and historic question time during his first term from 1994 to 1999.

While Muluzi did the exercise on three occasions, his successor late Bingu wa Mutharika vehemently refused to appear before the 193 strong House to fulfil the constitutional requirement.

Joyce Banda , who ascended to the presidency in 2012 following Bingu’s death, never attempted  to appear before Parliament and the immediate former president Peter Mutharika who ruled the  country from 2014 to 2020,  delegated twice to the then Leader of the House George Chaponda to answer questions mostly filed by Leader of Opposition in parliament.

The  Business Committee of Parliament, chaired by the Speaker of Parliament Catherine Gotani Hara and comprises leaders of political parties represented in the National Assembly, came up with the guidelines  for the HEQs.

“The President may be asked questions about matters of national and international importance by members of the Assembly. These may include matters for which the government us responsible, excluding matters for which a line minister is directly responsible,” reads the guidelines in part.

Chakwera will also take questions from MPs from the dispatch box seated on the government side  and not  where the President sits on the high chair when addressing the House, according to the guidelines.

Where the Vice-President wishes ti be present during HEQs, the guidelines provide that he shall have a seat reserved next to the President.

The guidelines further indicate that notice of the questions to the President shall be submitted by a member to the Speaker and a maximum of six working days shall be allowed before the Head of State answers the questions.

The Business Committee will also examine the notices of the questions before they are forwarded to the President.

“Questions on written notice to the President to be taken on a Wednesday at least twice in each Meeting of the Assembly,” says the guidelines.

The guidelines also show that Question Time for the President shall last for one hour 30 minutes.

A maximum of 5 questions shall be taken on each sitting day for the President’s Question Time and three supplementary questions shall be allowed on any of the five original questions to the President.

Some of the rules under Standing Order 70 (b) dealing with Section 89 (3) (c) states:

During a Budget Meeting of the Assembly, and immediately before consideration of the Budget Estimates, the President shall attend Parliament to respond to questions asked and raised during debate on the State of the Nation Address.

Meanwhile, deputy chairperson for the Legal Affairs Committee of parliament Peter Dimba presented to the House a review of standing orders and procedures to be followed for the HEQs.

Dimba clarified that the President under section 89 subsection 4 will be summoned to answer questions on Wednesday by way of motion when members of parliament can invite the Malawi leader to face HEQs come to Parliament and give him a notice of six days and give a maximum of five questions.

Said Dimba:“However section 89 sub section 3 the Constitution says the President shall come to parliament after presentation of SONA and before the national budget is actually presented and so this happens to be on a Thursday that’s the second scenario”.

Mzimba south’ Emmanuel Jere  hailed the orderly manner detailing how the exercise should be conducted which he said marked a new direction for the country.

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Herbert
9 months ago

He is supposed to be on top of national issues.Let him respond to questions as they come not this stahlged madness.

Mikoko
9 months ago

Parliament has met just for 3 days ndiye mafunso ake azikayankha oti chani? Kodi ndiye kuti Chakwera alibe chochita ku state House ko? Why is he not just concentrating on chosing board members for parastatols which he desolved long time ago? Zinthutu sizikuyenda izi under this blind parrot 🐦 Mr talk talk Chakwera.

Mathanyula
9 months ago
Reply to  Mikoko

This is a constitutional order which your mumu, gogo petulo feared to undertake. Our president want to respect the constitution and clarify how his adminstration is governing this country. If your mumu was busy sleeping at Sanjika this one I mean Dr. Chakwera is not a leepy president. Take it or leave it

Mwini muzi
9 months ago

Questions to be submitted six days prior to the day of answering them in parliament can not be challenging to the president because his experts will answer the questions for him. No wonder all the previous presidents found it not worthy and time wasting to go to parliament. The president was supposed to be giving immediate answers to immediate questions. That way we could determine if everything is on his finger tips hence determine that he is in control.

Loli
Loli
9 months ago
Reply to  Mwini muzi

Umbuli ndi matenda. Mafunso onse amakhala preasked ngakhale a ma minister..mwamva?

Zio ine
Zio ine
9 months ago

This is utter nosense. Waona kale likasa kufuna kutipusitsa. The dude can not face parliament like what Ramaphosa does.

Citizen
Citizen
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

Ngakhale atawona. Ngati ndi mayeso.Ifenso a kuma unduna amatipatsiratu kuti tifufuze bwinobwino.

Mswachi
Mswachi
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

Are you sure Ramaphosa is not given questions in advance?

Concerned citizen
Concerned citizen
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

No, it is not utter nonsense because as a nation we are interested in responses and not fooling each other like what happens elsewhere in this world. In fact, it is the best approach. For example, there was a time in this country when we wanted to know what the then President was doing to resolve the political impasse which rocked the nation. All we could hear were outbursts. Certain investigations are inconclusive what is happening? Killings of the albinos. The President mentioned in a scandal involving corruption. Questions like these needed the President himself or herself to answer; not… Read more »

WaWa
WaWa
9 months ago

President is to answer questions in parliament? Don’t be fooled. President Talk Talk Chakwera is an evangelist, trained for public speaking, so he will come to parliament and excel at answering questions but everything he say or promises to do will be just Talk Talk and nothing else. Parliament is wasting its time. This in not who we in the north voted for, we voted SKC so please make way.

mtete
mtete
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

At least he will do what coward APM failed to do for six years.

Mwini muzi
9 months ago
Reply to  mtete

Given the way Chikwera is gonna answer the questions, there is no way any fool what so ever can be so coward to just report what has been already answered for him.

just
just
9 months ago
Reply to  mtete

The coward is the one wanting a week to investigate. Malemu Mugabe had answers on his fingertips and that was brilliance

zawela
zawela
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

SKC is part of this decision and they may be together. Action starts with the heart and out of the heart the mouth speaks. Talk talk helps to assure people and the action will be by the people responsible. We need to be encouraged all the time and its part of the tenets of leadership.

Mulumuzana
Mulumuzana
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

So You want Malawi to continue with the old style of governing. Where president refused to be taken to task in parliament where we know MPs are at liberty to ask pertinent ensues affecting Malawi without being imprisoned. You need to take stock of your brain.

Richard Agustus
Richard Agustus
9 months ago
Reply to  Mulumuzana

President Talk Talk is indeed failing. wants to fool us with his good suits and sermons that’s all that he can do. Where is the free fertiliser, where are the 1 million jobs, where is no corruption.DPP MPs should ask Chakwera about the agreement between MCP and UTM and why it is kept a top secret in a democracy? As that is not transparent nor open. DPP MPs should hold Talk Talk to account.

Last edited 9 months ago by Richard Agustus
Mwambalanganya
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

Ukunama

Chautaamalanga
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

Ask him whether we can trust his promises when he is now abandoning the promises made and wants to build houses for MPs-a clear irrelevant priority?

CITIZEN
CITIZEN
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

Well we voted for Chakwera, the SKC you voted for was not on the ballot so I don’t know where you vote went. In the meantime you’ll do well to shut the fuck up.

Mswachi
Mswachi
9 months ago
Reply to  WaWa

This prioritisation of regions must fall

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