PARLIAMENT yesterday threw out a private member’s motion urging Government to amend the Public Order Act (POA) Chapter 113 of the laws of Zambia to align it to the Bill of Rights.
The motion was moved yesterday by Choma Central United Party of National Development (UPND) Member of Parliament (MP) Cornelius Mweetwa.
The House voted against the motion as Government was already in the process of amending the Act and a Bill would, in this regard be tabled in the next session of Parliament prior to the August 11, general elections.
Mr Mweetwa’s motion was seconded by Lukulu East Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) MP Christopher Kalila and supported by Nalikwanda MMD MP Geoffrey Lungwangwa.
UPND’S Highvie Hamududu for Bweengwa and Jack Mwiimbu for Monze Central and Alliance for Democracy and Development (ADD) Luena MP Gertrude Imenda were the other members who supported Mr Mweetwa’s motion.
However, Home Affairs Minister Davies Mwila said Government was against Mr Mweetwa’s motion because the process of reviewing the POA had commenced and was in motion.
“Mr Speaker as directed by His Excellency Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, the Ministries of Justice and Home Affairs have already engaged stakeholders on this matter and a Bill to review the Public Order Act will be brought to this House in the next sitting before the general elections,” Mr Mwila said.
Speaker of the National Assembly, Patrick Matibini, then put the motion to vote via the electronic system and 72 out of 97 MP’S present voted against the motion while 25 voted for it.
Those who voted against the motion represented 74.23 per cent of the composition of the MP’S while those who voted in favour of it represented 25.77 per cent.
None of the present MP’S abstained from voting.