Smoke filled the Parliament chamber in Lilongwe when it opened for the Fourth Meeting of the 47th Session and legistors brought to the attention of Speaker Richard Msowoya who brushed off the claims.
Lilongwe South West MP, Peter Chakwantha, stood on a point of order during ministerial statement by Minister of Heath and Population, Atupele Muluzi, to raise the alarm but Speaker of Parliament, Msowoya, downplayed the fears, saying it was vapour because the room was warmer after the air conditioning system was switched off.
“I see something as well, but I don’t think it is smoke,” said Msowoya when the matter was brought to his attention.
“If you remember the air conditioners were switched off and this could be the reason. However, let me ask Parliament staff to investigate and I will report back.”
But Chakwantha stood again to insist there was a smoky smell in the air.
“Some of us are asthmatic and this is not good for us,” he said.
Speaker asked the Parliament officers to swiftly check the issue and advice on the healthy and safety measures.
Msowoya reported back that there was burning of stuff at the nearby Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) which resulted in smoky air being drawn into the Parliament Building and the chamber.