FODEP’s McDonald Chipenzi seeks stiffer laws
By Derrick Sinjela Wednesday, December 14, 2011
FOUNDATION for Democratic Process (FODEP) Executive Director McDonald Chipenzi has called for stiffer legislation for parliamentarians who resign on lame excuses.
Chipenzi said politicians should not be careless by causing unnecessary by-elections which cost a lot of money which can be used for social and economic development.
He said this when he addressed journalist in reaction to the recent resignation of Msanzala Independent Member of Parliament Colonel George Lungu to join the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) Party.
“Causing a very expensive by-election show how insensitive our leaders are, because the money that will go to organize that by-election will be huge and would have helped Musanzala in terms of roads, in terms of infrastructure…” he said.
“So it is very disappointing and I hope that the people of Msanzala will not take it kindly if the party he has joined adopts him. And they should exercise their right to vote to punish such kind of leaders,” he emphasized.
Chipenzi called on Zambians to look at the reforms when it comes to parliamentarians resigning unnecessarily. “I think we need to change the law because MPs have taken the people of Zambia especially the electorate for granted,” he added.
Chipenzi further suggested the when an MP resigns the runner-up should take over in order to avoid expensive by-elections that are caused by greediness on the part of the leaders.
“We need more money in our pockets, more money in road infrastructure, and more money in agriculture. Today I was listening to the news were some farmers are complaining that they have not been paid their money on the crops that they sold to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) , and so we are going for a by-election that will cost over K2 billion or so,” he charged.
He challenged the government to request the MPs to support the ruling party quietly and not cause by-elections.
Meanwhile colonel Lungu was quoted in one of the medias saying that parliamentarians must always endeavor to put the interests of the electorate before their own.
The resignation of the parliamentarian has brought an outcry throughout various sectors of society and stakeholders who have criticized Colonel Lungu for resigning as an independent Member of Parliament for Msanzala.