Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini has ruled that it was up to the government to apply the law under which former presidents lose their retirement benefits if they engage in active politics.
He was responding to a point of order raised by Monze Central Member of Parliament Jack Mwiimbu Tuesday afternoon who asked if government was in order to continue paying former President Rupiah Banda his retirement benefits when he was actively campaigning for the Patriotic Front in Solwezi.
Mwiimbu reminded the Speaker that at the time when former President Rupiah Banda wanted to contest the January 2015 presidential elections, a PF member of the house raised a point of order on whether government was in order to continue paying Rupiah Banda when he was in active politics.
Mwiimbu said a ruling was made at the time that the law was very clear on benefits of former presidents who engage in active politics.
In passing his ruling, Dr Patrick Matibini reiterated that the law was clear but said it was up to the government to implement its provisions.
‘Yes a point of order was raised and I had explained what the law stipulates, my position has not changed, it’s up to the government to implement that,’ said Dr Matibini.
Former President Rupiah Banda has recently been campaigning for the Patriotic Front in Solwezi in violation of the law that forbids former presidents from engaging in active politics.
When Banda attempted to contest the presidential elections early this year the PF threatened to withdraw his benefits but they put him on their campaign team after they used the courts to block him from contesting.