The House adjourned for over one hour yesterday after the government side noted that the absence of leaders of the Legal Affairs Committee during debate on its report on the Political Parties Bill would make it difficult to wind up debate.
The majority of members of Parliament (MPs) who offered to contribute to the debate on the repor,t were against the proposed amendment to the bill which would make handouts illegal only during the campaign period.
According to the Parliamentary and President Elections Act, the election campaign period begins 90 days before polling day and ends 48 hours before people go to vote.
However, after just 45 minutes of sitting, the Leader of House Kondwani Nankhumwa said the deliberations could not continue in the absence of the leaders of the committee.
A new business on the order paper, a ministerial statement on Early Childhood Development (ECD), failed to cover for the time until tea break as the House decided that questions on the statement would be taken later.
After tea break, chairperson of the committee Maxwell Thyolera apologised for his absence, saying he was in Salima attending a committee meeting with some stakeholders.
“On the way back, I passed by my constituency to attend a funeral of a constituent,” he said.