National Assembly Speaker scolds MPs…conduct “unruly and disorderly”.

Matibini-Speaker scolds MPs…as he terms their conduct disorderly, unacceptable
Matibini-Speaker scolds MPs…as he terms their conduct disorderly, unacceptable

SPEAKER of the National Assembly Patrick Matibini yesterday admonished opposition Members of Parliament (MPs) for disrupting proceedings in the House, describing their conduct as “unruly and disorderly”.
Parliament’s security wing yesterday swung into action to restore order inside Parliament as MPs flocked to the Speaker’s mace area to air their grievance over the Constitution making process as tempers flared.
Zambia police officers were also deployed around Parliament grounds to monitor the situation.
Dr Matibini said the conduct of the opposition was unruly and threatened to invoke Standing Order number 70 which could have seen the MPs being led out of the House by the Sergeant-at-Arms.
“It is clear this is a deliberate attempt to disrupt proceedings. This is disorderly conduct, I thereby order the Sergeant-at-Arms to remove unruly MPs.
“This conduct is disorderly and not permitted by our Constitution. Standing Order number 70 has been violated and it is clear we cannot transact with the Honourable MPs conducting themselves in this way.
The only thing to do is like in the past, to walk out. We cannot talk in this kind of situation,” Dr Matibini said.
Dr Matibini however, suspended Parliamentary business to allow for order to return to the House.
The opposition bench continued their in-house protests over the Constitution which started during Tuesday’s session and led to an early adjournment.
The MPs constantly obstructed the deliberations by insisting that it was inappropriate to continue with the proceedings without attending to issues of the Constitution making process.
But the Speaker said in order to restore order and decorum of the House, it was inevitable to suspend business until normalcy was restored.
As the Speaker presided over business, opposition MPs tussled with the security officers who were more than 10, in a bid to bring order in the House.
Cabinet members watched as the scuffle ensued amidst an exchange of words between the opposition and the ruling bench.
Vice-President Guy Scott’s security personnel entered the House, but this was protested against by the opposition MPs, demanding that they leave the House along with the Parliament security officers.
However, business resumed at 17:43 with the Speaker stating that what had transpired was unprecedented and unfortunate, and that his office would address the matter accordingly.
“What transpired is unprecedented and unfortunate, but I have a structure and it will be dealt with accordingly, let us not go back to this issue through points of orders as it has been communicated to me formally and it shall be dealt with,” Dr Matibini said.
Dr Matibini said Zambians were watching and that such matters should be addressed through dialogue as opposed to disrupting proceedings.