The Speaker of the National Assembly, Right Honourable Henry Chimunthu Banda is tomorrow expected to crack his whip on errant members of parliament of the United Democratic Front (UDF)
The Speaker’s verdict is yet another litmus test for Peoples Party (PP) government as regards upholding constitutionalism and the rule of law.
UDF members to be affected by the Speaker’s decision are Ibrahim Matola for Mangochi North, who is also Minister of Energy; Henry Shawa for Blantyre Bangwe; Shamil Asibu for Mangochi Southwest and Alfred Mwechumu for Mangochi Northeast. All the members, however, said they are not shaken by the speaker’s imminent announcement.
The UDF members went against their party’s decision to return to the opposition benches following the party’s convention which elected Austin Atupele Muluzi as its President and 2014 elections’ torch bearer. UDF, joined the Joyce Banda government when two of its MPs accepted ministerial positions in Banda’s first cabinet in April last year.
Speaker’s ruling comes against protracted legal battle between former ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and its MPs who ditched the party for Joyce Banda’s party soon after the death of Bingu wa Muthalika. DPP’s efforts to have seats of their nomadic MPs declared vacant was dealt a heavy blow when Deputy Education Minister Chikumbutso Hiwa obtained a court injunction restraining speaker from evoking section 65.