SPEAKER of the National Assembly Patrick Matibini has advised the opposition United Party for National Development (UPND) that the Itezhi Tezhi parliamentary seat cannot be declared vacant until the court disposes of the case.
The UPND had written to the Speaker requesting him to declare the Itezhi Tezhi Parliamentary seat vacant after the party expelled the area member of Parliament (MP) Greyford Monde.
Mr Monde was appointed as Agriculture and Livestock deputy minister in the Patriotic Front (PF) Government and was subsequently expelled from the opposition party.
However, he has contested his expulsion and the case is before the Lusaka High Court.
UPND spokesperson Charles Kakoma said in an interview yesterday that the party has received response from the Speaker advising that he was unable to declare the seat vacant as the matter was still before the court of law.
Mr Kakoma reiterated that any MP who would accept to serve in the PF Government without the blessing of the National Management Committee (NMC) would ‘automatically expel themselves from the party.’
“The NMC made a policy that if any MP wants to serve in Government, the member should consult and get approval before making such a move,’ he said.
He said none of the members that have been appointed as deputy ministers in the current Government consulted or got approval from the to serve in the PF Government.
He said since the MPs had joined Government, technically they have crossed the floor and would be voting in favour of Government policies in Parliament Sinazongwe MP Richwell Siamunene was also appointed into the PF Government as Commerce, Trade and Industry deputy Minister.