Saturday, January 26, 2008

Dr Puma expresses concern over MPs' ignorance

Dr Puma expresses concern over MPs' ignorance
By Mwala Kalaluka
Saturday January 26, 2008 [03:00]

HEALTH deputy minister Dr Lwipa Puma on Wednesday said he was bewildered by the high levels of poverty of knowledge among some parliamentarians. And Roan PF member of parliament Chishimba Kambwili was on the same day restrained from uttering side comments against Speaker Amusaa Mwanamwambwa after he was denied an opportunity to raise a point of order against Dr Puma’s statement.

During debate on President Levy Mwanawasa’s address at the opening of the second session of the Tenth National Assembly, Dr Puma said he was bewildered that Kambwili, in one of his debates in the House, complained that he could not find choloroquine in the pharmacy of one of the hospitals in Luanshya.

“Mr. Speaker, I did not understand that the level of poverty of knowledge is so high,” Dr Puma said as some opposition parliamentarians heckled him.

“I can’t believe that four years after withdrawing choloroquine from the market, they still go to a clinic and ask about choloroquine.”

The government has replaced choloroquine with coartem as the first line of defence in the fight against malaria.

He urged members of parliament to always consult managers of hospitals and clinics in their constituencies before making statements on the issue of drug shortages in health institutions in the House.

“Things have changed,” said Dr Puma.
But Kambwili, who seemed uncomfortable during Dr Puma’s debate, tried to attract Speaker Mwanamwambwa’s attention by shouting “point of order, point of order” on top of his voice.

Speaker Mwanamwambwa however, ignored Kambwili’s calls for a point of order and allowed Dr Puma to continue his debate.

As he took his seat next to Lusaka Central PF member of parliament Guy Scott, Kambwili was heard grumbling about parliamentary standards that do not accommodate points of order, but Scott discouraged him from issuing sideline comments against Speaker Mwanamwambwa’s decision.

Speaker Mwanamwambwa has said before that he will only allow serious points of order to avoid the House being placed in unnecessary delays in the execution of its core business.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home