Speaker of the National Assembly Richard Msowoya has ruled that the House can meet even though the political leadership has not met in Business Committee to set an agenda.
It is the tradition that the political leaders in the House from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party(DPP), the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), the Peoples Party (PP) and the United Democratic Front (UDF) meet to discuss and endorse business to be carried out in the 193 strong House.
However the Business Committee failed to meet over the weekend because Msowoya had just arrived from abroad, according to parliament’s public relations officer Leonard Mengezi.
He said the Business Committee will meet on Wednesday instead.
However, in parliament, members of parliament were on their toes, taking the Speaker to task on why the House was meeting in the absence of the Business Committee meeting, which also endorses an every day business for the House. Msowoya said no law was broken.
“There is no standing order which stops parliament from meeting if the Business Committee has not met,” he said.
He said when the committee meets on Wednesday, it will discuss the issue of deputy Leader of the Hpuse and deputy whips.
He said parliament has been recognising deputy Leader of the House and deputy party whips when parliamentary standing orders are silent on those positions.
“It will be up to the House to maintain those positions or drop them,” said Msowoya.
He said until the matter is discussed, he recognises Kondwani Nankhumwa, the deputy Leader of the House as acting Leader of the House in the absence of George Chaponda who is serving a court ordered suspension as Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development to pave way for investigations on maize purchase from Zambia being conducted by a Commission of Inquiry that President Peter Mutharika set up last month.