CAB­I­NET ENDS PARLY BOYCOAT

Observer on Saturday - - Front page - Sto­ries by Mbono Md­luli

MPs walk out, House ad­journed MP Jo­hane re­fuses to apol­o­gise State­ment on new Bo­gogo Wed­nes­day

Cab­i­net has fi­nally ended the boy­cott it started on Wed­nes­day, which re­sulted in MPs car­ry­ing out Par­lia­ment busi­ness without min­is­ters.

Yes­ter­day, Prime Min­is­ter Dr. Sibu­siso Dlamini, Deputy Prime Min­is­ter (DPM) Paul Dlamini and some Cab­i­net min­is­ters at­tended an im­promptu Par­lia­ment busi­ness.

Be­fore the start of Par­lia­ment busi­ness, a com­mu­ni­ca­tion from the chair­man of the House was is­sued to the law­mak­ers.

The com­mu­ni­ca­tion was is­sued by House of As­sem­bly Speaker Themba Msibi, who is also the chair­per­son of the House. Msibi said it would be ad­vis­able for both back­benchers (MPs) and front­benchers (Cab­i­net min­is­ters) to con­tinue with their work so that is­sues of pub­lic in­ter­est could be ad­dressed by both par­ties.

Msibi said it was un­for­tu­nate that what they did as MPs to Cab­i­net was wrongly in­ter­preted in pub­lic.

MPs are said to have ex­pelled Cab­i­net min­is­ters from Par­lia­ment yet the lat­ter as­signed the former to work on how they could source funds for pay­ing new el­derly peo­ple, who had turned 60 years from April 2017 un­til now.

Another is­sue that Cab­i­net was to ad­dress was that of Pha­lala Fund, where it had been re­ported that some of the Swazis who were sup­posed to be its ben­e­fi­cia­ries were not at­tended to. This made their sit­u­a­tion to be worse as they were not re­ceiv­ing any med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

Un­ac­cept­able

The Speaker went on to tell the House that when the two par­ties parted ways dur­ing their last sit­ting, some MPs did what was un­ac­cept­able in the House. The last sit­ting the speaker was talk­ing about was last week Thurs­day. Mba­bane West MP Jo­hane Shongwe tore into pieces a state­ment which was read in the House by the then Act­ing Prime Min­is­ter Paul Dlamini.

Min­is­ter for Pub­lic Ser­vice Owen Nx­u­malo was asked to leave the House over a bad joke he made to­wards Nk­wene MP Sikhum­buzo Dlamini.

Msibi asked the MPs and min­is­ters not to de­bate the mat­ter, so that there could be a way-for­ward on the mat­ter. The Speaker wanted MP Jo­hane Shongwe to show some re­morse on the act of tear­ing the state­ment by with­draw­ing what­ever words he said dur­ing the de­bate last week.

When Shongwe started speak­ing, Nk­wene MP Sikhum­buzo Dlamini stood on a point of order and wanted to know why it was nec­es­sary for Shongwe to with­draw.

MP Sikhum­buzo was of the view that Shongwe needed not to with­draw any­thing be­cause the mat­ter was dealt with by the Speaker.

The Speaker also told the House that Min­is­ter Owen Nx­u­malo showed an act of re­morse af­ter he was asked to leave on Thurs­day last week.

Nx­u­malo went to the of­fice of the Speaker to apol­o­gise on what he had done. Msibi told the House that he ac­cepted Nx­u­malo’s apol­ogy.

How­ever, his apol­ogy to the Speaker was not enough to the MPs. Lobamba MP Michael Masilela pleaded with Nx­u­malo to also apol­o­gise to MP Sikhum­buzo. Nx­u­malo ended up apol­o­gis­ing to MP Sikhum­buzo.

MP Jo­hane Shongwe, on the other hand, did not apol­o­gise yes­ter­day. In­stead, he said he would not re­peat him­self in the House be­cause the mat­ter was dealt with last week by the Speaker.

He said he was happy that the Speaker re­buked him and he ac­cepted that he made a mis­take.

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