As members continued to debate on the State of the Nation address, deliberations in the house were nearly thrown into turmoil as an argument rose when
Deputy Minister of Finance Ralph Jooma stirred up some controversy in the House when he accused Nkhotakota Central Member of Parliament Edwin Banda over the suit which Banda.
Banda, a lawyer by profession, is aspiring to be president of opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP).
He said during his contributions to the State of Nation address which President Joyce Banda delivered in Parliament last Friday : ” To rate this administration in terms of performance, we can rate it as follows: 43 percent on fuel availability whereby 57 is lost to the pump price; zero on drugs in public hospitals and zero in all govt sectors.”
But Jooma rising on a point of order ridiculed the dressing of Banda, saying he looked as if he is coming from a wedding where he played page boy not coming to the August house.
Banda was dressed in a shiny brown suit.
Jooma’s remark riled Banda who sought permission to be given the floor again but second deputy speaker of parliament Juliana Mphande, who was presiding over the deliberations, refused to do so a thing which worsened the situation.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chief Whip Henry Mussa suggested that Jooma withdraw his remarks about Banda’s dressing as they were unparliamentarily, according to Standing Order rules
Calm only returned in the house after the Deputy Minister withdrew his remark by which time was already up and the house was adjourned.