Namwala UPND Member of Parliament Moono Lubezhi has expressed shock to hear that Parliament lifted her 30 days suspension.
On June 22, Speaker of National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini reviewed Lubezhi’s suspension and lifted it after realising that she did not boycott President Lungu’s state of the nation address on purpose like the others did.
Speaker Matibini said the lawmaker was erroneously included on the list of 48 absentee MPs.
“Honourable members, I would love to confirm from the onset that the Honourable member for Namwala was expressly granted authority to be absent from the House on 16th and 17th March, 2017 by the Honorable Chief Whip to enable her attend a Court session. Therefore her inclusion on the list of the 48 UPND suspended Members of Parliament was both inadvertent and regrettable. The ruling should be corrected and it is in view of this fact that I here by amend my ruling of 13th June 2017 to reflect the fact that the Honourable Member for Namwala Constituency was absent with permission on 17th March 2017. I further direct the Clerk to ensure that the records are amended accordingly and remedial measures taken immediately,” said Dr Matibini.
On July 12, deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Catherine Namugala announced to the House that Parliament had failed to locate Lubezhi to inform her of the lifted suspension.
“Honourable members, with regard to Ms Moono Lubezhi, MP, I wish to inform the House that on 26th June, 2017, the office of the clerk wrote a letter notifying her that suspension had been inadvertent and requested her to return to the House. However, from that time to date, the office of the clerk has made numerous attempts to find the Honourable member and serve the letter on her, the clerk has been unable to locate her because her whereabouts have been unknown and her phones have been constantly switched off,” said Namugala.
But in an interview with News Diggers! Lubezhi said it was not possible for parliament to fail to locate her.
“Am just hearing this for the first time from you. All I know is that I served my suspension for 30 days like any other MP, I haven’t heard anything from Parliament,” Lubezhi said.
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She said Parliament always knew where to find members during recess.
“I don’t think that is possible, I mean that is parliament and when we are on recess. They know how to get hold of us. How come this time it was not possible to get hold of me? So I don’t think that is possible but I was never communicated to,” said Lubezhi.