Labour, Youth and Man Development minister Henry Mussa on Thursday continued to answer all agriculture related questions in parliament as Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development George Chaponda awaits his fate with fingers crossed as the Supreme Court of Appeal and two inquiries on maize gate have just hours to make their ruling and recommendations.
Mussa tried all he could to fit in the shoes of the suspended minister Chaponda.
Interim Leader of the House, Kondwani Nankhumwa sat silently in the 193 just hours after President Peter Mutharika appointed him to lead Government business in parliament.
The Supreme Court Judge Dunstain Mwaungulu is expected to make a ruling on Friday on whether Chaponda remains suspended or not.
The President Peter Mutharika appointed commission of inquiry is also expected to finish its job on Friday so too the parliamentary inquiry which comprised of two parliamentary committees of Agriculture and Public Accounts Committee.
Chaponda appeared before the parliamentary inquiry where, among other issues, he was quizzed why he used a personal email to correspond with Transglobe officials instead of using government emails.
Chaponda conceded corresponding with Transsglobe officials, one of the people named in the Zambia maize saga, using a personal email account.
“This is because when I joined the ministry of Agriculture, the minister’s computer had just been stolen, thieves broke into the office of the minister and stole the computer,” he said.
He also said the government server is extremely slow that it is not easy to conduct business using the government email.
Chaponda also told the committee that he was not directly involved in financial issues on the procurement of maize from Zambia, saying such issues were handled by Finance minister Goodall Gondwe.
“At times, he blamed me of stepping on his toes,” he said.
Opposition members of parliament have been asking for the head of Chaponda as Leader of the House.
He is considered favoured to take over from Mutharika as Democratic Progressive Party in 2024 and consequently the presidential candidate for the party.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :