The possibility of MPs losing seats in Parliament through Section 65 brought confusion in Parliament on Thursday.
Two legislators, who wrote the Speaker in the morning asking to go back to DPP, made a U-turn in the afternoon and wrote the Speaker again that they are going back to the government side.
Speaker of the National Assembly Henry Chimunthu Banda made an announcement in the House in the morning that three MPs had asked to move to the DPP side. The MPs were Chitipa Wenyaâ€™s Godfrey Mudulansi Munkhondya; Kasungu Westâ€™s Otria Moyo Jere and Mzimba Luwereziâ€™s Dr Bofomo Nyirenda.
However, at the beginning of the sitting in the afternoon, Chimunthu Banda announced that Munkhondya wrote to reverse his earlier decision. Soon before closure of the dayâ€™s proceedings, the Speaker announced again that Nyirenda had also made a U-turn to rejoin government benches.
The drama comes amid reports that at least 15 MPs wrote the Speaker to go back to DPP following letters which Chimunthu Banda wrote to 45 MPs on the government side to defend themselves against a DPP petition on applying Section 65.
However, in an interview before the afternoon sitting, Chimunthu Banda said he had only received communication from the three as announced in the House.
â€œIf they are some more, then probably I will have them later, but for this morning it was only what I announced in the House,â€ he said.
In an interview, Munkhondya said he decided to go back after consulting his constituents who advised him that he should not get himself involved in Section 65 issues.
He, however, said further consultations revealed that he was safe since he initially came into the House as an independent before joining DPP.
DPP publicity secretary Nicholas Dausi said the information the party has is that 15 MPs have written the Speaker, but he declined to name them, saying the party will wait until the MPs are formally announced that they have come back to the opposition benches.