Speaker of the National Assembly Catherine Gotani Hara has tested positive for Covid-19, three days after presiding over the opening of the Mid-Year Budget Review meeting of Parliament.
Leader of the House Richard Chimwendo Banda said in an interview on Thursday the Speaker went for a test after two members of her household tested positive.
He said: “Yes, I can confirm. She went on her own to the hospital this morning after two members of her household tested positive.
“She is in good health. She did that thinking of other people. When someone you live with tests positive for Covid-19, it is good to go for the test and isolate yourself. We thank her for taking that bold step and wish her well ,together with her family.”
Asked if her situation will affect parliamentary business deliberations, Chimwendo Banda said Parliament will continue as both Deputy Speakers are available.
He also ruled out fears that Gotani Hara came into contact with some members of Parliament (MPs) or other parliamentary officials, saying she has been very cautious during the pandemic to avoid contact.
Earlier, First Deputy Speaker of Parliament Madalitso Kazombo also tested positive to Covid-19 but he fully recovered.
Several members of Parliament have also been victims of the pandemic with some losing their lives.
To reduce the risk of Covid-19 spread, Parliament reduced the number of MPs sitting in the House during the ongoing Mid-Year Budget Review to 70, with the rest participating virtually.
Parliament is also strict on wearing of masks and has also put in place hand-washing facilities, sanitisers and other Covid-19 preventive measures.