Government has lined up 10 bills for debate in the forthcoming seating of parliament which starts Monday but officials from the National Assembly say the legislators will not discuss the expulsion of six members of parliament for failing to declare their assets.
Parliaments spokesperson Leonard Mengezi said the 10 bills include a constitutional amendment bill, tobacco industry bill, National Remuneration Commission amendment bill, Ombudsman amendment bill, Law Commission amendment bill, Malawi Human Rights Commission amendment bill and corrupt practices amendment bill.
Mengezi also said the parliamentarians will debate an OPEC fund bill which seeks to borrow money from OPEC to fund for the improvement of water supply in Nkhata Bay.
Lilongwe Central MP will also table a private member’s bill for the establishment of a National Children Commission, saying three other MPs are also expected to table private bills as well as ministerial reports and question time, among others.
On the issue of six parliamentarians who face the chop for their failure to declare their assets, Mengezi said the issue cannot be table in plenary.
“The issue of that nature does not go into the floor. The law is very clear. The director of the public asset declarations office wrote the speaker and it is up to the speaker to make a decision on the matter,” said Mengezi.
Meanwhile, Civil society organisations (CSOs) under the banner of Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) have renewed their calls for the impeachment of President Peter Mutharika for his failure to respond to issues raised in their two petitions.
HRDC deputy national chairperson Gift Trapence, who is also executive director for Centre for the Development of People (Cedep), said the CSOs want legislators to summon Mutharika during the meeting to respond to questions bordering on corruption and governance issues or risk impeachment.
He said in quotes reported by the press: “We are writing all political parties before Parliament begins this week. We want Parliament to call the President so that he should answer questions.”
But in their responses, Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and People’s Party (PP), the key opposition parties in Parliament, said they need to look at the grounds of impeachment before they can map the way forward.
DPP spokesperson Nicholas Dausi denounced the CSOs’ intention of writing political parties, saying “they have a pathological hatred for the President”
The seating which starts on November 19 ends in November, the last seating of parliament before a general election on May 21, 2019.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :