Speaker declines to intervene in C/B land scandal

Thu, 08 Dec 2016 07:48:05 +0000

By Oscar Malipenga

SPEAKER of the National Assembly Dr. Patrick Matibini yesterday declined to intervene in the Copperbelt illegal land allocation scandal involving Patriotic Front (PF) officials.

Dr. Matibini guided the House that there was no extreme urgency to warrant the intervention of his office on the alleged illegal allocation of plots on the Copperbelt.

The Speaker said this when he rendered a ruling on a point of order raised by United Party for National Development (UPND) Chief Whip Garry Nkombo who sought the Speaker’s intervention on the contradiction of Patriotic Front (PF) secretary general Davis Mwila and Copperbelt Province Bowman Lusambo on the matter.

Dr. Matibini told Mr Nkombo that he was at liberty to interrogate the Patriotic Front on the contradiction of Mr Mwila and Mr Lusambo by asking a question on the floor of the House.

In his point of order, Mr Nkombo told the House through the Speaker that Mr Mwila threatened Mr Lusambo when he directed the latter to stop issuing statement to the media over the illegal allocation of plots in the province because it had the potential to divide the party.

Quoting The Mast story under the heading “Fire me for doing the right thing – Lusambo”, Mr Nkombo wanted to find out whether the PF government was in order to be defending cadres behind the illegal allocation of plots on the Copperbelt, contrary to a statement that was issued by the Minister of Lands Jean Kapata in Parliament recently.

“Mr Speaker, Mr Mwila, who is the Chief Executive Officer of the PF, advised Mr Lusambo that he has to work with the cadres in harmony because they were the ones who were making the demarcations of the land in question,” Mr Nkombo said.

Mr Nkombo said Ms Kapata in her ministerial statement vowed to deal with the perpetrators of illegal land allocation on the Copperbelt.

He said the statement issued in Parliament by the Minister of Lands was contrary to a statement issued by the secretary general on the Copperbelt.

“Mr Speaker, are they in order to come to this House with good statements when on the other hand they are encouraging illegal allocation of land,” Mr Nkombo said.

But in his ruling, Dr Matibini said the matter raised by Mr Nkombo has not reached an extreme urgency to warrant the interventions of his office.

The Speaker further advised Mr Nkombo to instead interrogate the PF government through a question on the seemingly contradiction between Mr Mwila and Mr Lusambo.

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