Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) leaders, Timothy Mtambo and Gift Trapence, sat in the public gallery at Parliament today, forcing the House to suspend proceedings.
Deputy Leader of Government Business in the House Martha Lunji Mhone Chanjo proposed that the House be suspended saying the presence of the HRDC leaders put the legislators in danger.
Following Chanjo’s motion, the House was suspended to allow the business committee to meet.
This morning, the HRDC conducted a press briefing in Lilongwe where they announced that they will hold vigils at Parliament tomorrow to force Members of Parliament to pass electroral reforms bills.
The issue of the vigils was also discussed in the House before it was suspended.
Speaking with reporters, Minister of Homeland Security Nicholas Dausi said that they do not want vigils in and around Parliament premisses.
He added that despite HRDC’s promise to hold peaceful demonstrations, protests organised by the grouping always end in violence.
“Journalists have captured pictures of burning building and people armed with panga knives during HRDC demonstrations, we do not want this at the Parliament premisses,” he said.
In his response, Mtambo said what the Members of Parliament did is childish. He added that the two did not go to the House to play but to monitor the session as citizens of this country.