Another vacuous statement on the stalled Constitution making process by Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba yesterday, infuriated members of the opposition and Speaker of the National Assembly Dr. Patrick Matibini was forced to restrain MMD vice president Dr. Michael Kaingu who launched a verbal tirade against the executive.
Dr. Kaingu said that he was disgusted by the statement given by Kabimba which did not give hope for a clear road map for the constitutional making process.
And Lubansenshi Independent Member of Parliament Patrick Mucheleka has accused the executive of hijacking the National Assembly and other oversight institutions.
“Mr. Speaker parliament has been hijacked by the executive. Who sent the police yesterday in the grounds of the National Assembly? Mr. Speaker if you didn’t know we were invaded here, I mean not outside parliament but here. This is reality Mr. Speaker Sir Parliament is being used as an arm of the executive,” said Mucheleka.
Mucheleka said that it was shocking that parliament was now being used by the executive, adding that at the moment all arms of government were non functional due to too much power by the executive.
He questioned the presence of armed police officers in the precincts of parliament and who invited them when MPs enjoyed immunity.
Mucheleka said that it was sad that in the last few days’ events had exposed the executive’s interference in the operation of parliament too.
Mucheleka also said that institution such as the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC), the Anti-Corruption Commission and the Police were being abused by the executive because they did not operate in an independent manner.
He said that it was only through the enactment of a new constitution which was people driven that such powers and abuses by the executive could be stopped.
And Dr. Kaingu said that Zambians were not demanding for the road map on the constitutional making process by the release of the final draft constitution.
Dr. Kaingu challenged the Technical Committee on the Constitution to come out clear over the many allegations made by the executive against them over the release of the document.
And moving a private member’s motion for the house to urge government to provide a roadmap for the enactment of a new constitution and also to expedite the process considering that the work of the Technical Committee on Drafting the Constitution has been completed and is ready for submission, UPND Mazabuka Member of Parliament Garry Nkombo said that the people of Zambia could no longer trust the PF government and its leadership.
Nkombo said that the PF and President Sata in particular made a promise to deliver a constitution within 90 days.
He said that President Sata’s statements on the constitution lately have been worrying and confusing as they did not inspire and show commitment to the enactment of the new constitution.
Nkombo said that there was need for the PF government to respect the process of constitution making which they started on their own.
And seconding the motion, MMD Chembe Member of Parliament Mwansa Mbulakulima urged the PF government to fulfill all the promises President Michael Sata made on the constitution making including when he made his first address to the National Assembly.
Mbulakulima said President Sata has shown a lack of interest in the constitution making process considering the statements he has been making recently.
And contributing to the debate on the motion, Kabimba could not give a clear road map as demanded by the members of parliament. Kabimba however, said that if the promise to deliver a constitution in 90 days was made, then it would have been made out of insufficient knowledge over the high levels of corruption and mismanagement of the affairs by the previous government.