HomeLocalParly sits only for two minutes

Parly sits only for two minutes

PARLIAMENT yesterday sat for two minutes after Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa ended the session without any motion being discussed.

by VENERANDA LANGA

The National Assembly had to be re-summoned to sit yesterday after the House adjourned on Wednesday due to lack of quorum, while debate on the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Amendment Bill to legalise bond notes was still on-going.

More than $15 000 went down the drain as the 70 MPs that attended yesterday’s brief session would be paid $75 sitting allowances each and $80 for hotel accommodation and fuel.

According to Parliament Standing Rules and Orders, if the House adjourns on a Thursday without constituting a quorum, it will have to resume on a Friday, which is not a normal sitting day for Parliament.  The house did not sit on Thursday as it was  a public holiday.

bells were rung at 9:30am, which is the sitting time if the House sits on Friday, and as soon as the Parliament opening prayer was said, Chinamasa wished all MPs a merry Christmas and adjourned the House without any motion, including the RBZ amendment Bill being discussed.

“Before I adjourn the House to January 24 2017, I would like to wish everyone a merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year,” Chinamasa said to the applause of MPs.

The house was adjourned even though there were more than 70 MPs to constitute a quorum to discuss different Bills and motions on the order paper.

Later, after the two-minute sitting, MPs were seen milling at the sergeant at arms Nicholas Marufu’s doorstep to get their names recorded for attendance so that they could get their allowances.

In the 2017 national budget, the cash-strapped government only managed to allocate a measly $30 million for Parliament, resulting in MPs complaining that it was too little.

However, on several occasions in 2016, Parliament had to incur expenditure by sitting on Fridays due to lack of quorum.

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