Speaker threatens to name and shame absent MPs

Catherine Gotani Hara

Speaker of Parliament Catherine Gotani Hara has expressed concern over absenteeism among Members of Parliament and she has warned that in future sessions absent members will be named and shamed.

The Speaker issued the warning on Friday at the end of the 49th Session of Parliament.

She said if members continue to be absent, she will not do otherwise but to name and shame those responsible members.

This week, Parliament passed several bills including a Constitution amendment on Wednesday when 46 MPs were absent.

Speaking with reporters, Leader of the House Richard Chimwendo Banda commended legislators for managing to pass the budget and some bills. He said the new legislations will promote good governance, Revenue collection and improve working conditions.

He then advised members of the opposition side to resolve their conflicts because they are affecting business of the house since positions of people keep on changing.

“My plea to the members of the opposition side is that please try and resolve your misunderstandings. We understand that as party you have your own reasons, we can’t keep changing positions of people in this honorable house it does not happen like that. another issue, let’s stop boycotting from the house,” he said.

However, Leader of the opposition Kondwani Nankhumwa argued that the issue of boycotting debate did not start with Democratic Progressive Party. He added that members have a right to walk out of Parliament if they do not agree with an issue.