NORTON legislator Temba Mliswa (Independent) on Tuesday warned newlysworn MDC-T proportional representative MP Thokozani Khupe against walking out on President Emmerson Mnangagwa when he is addressing the august House.
In apparent reference to MDC Alliance members who have been walking out in protest whenever Mnangagwa addresses Parliament, Mliswa said there was need for maturity from the opposition.
He said they should desist from walking out when the President is addressing.
MDC Alliance legislators have in the past justified their behaviour saying they did not recognise Mnangagwa, accusing him of manipulating the 2018 presidential election results following his defeat by people’s favourite leader Nelson Chamisa.
Khupe was controversially sworn in as MP last week together with 14 others to replace recalled members from the Chamisa-led party.
She was immediately assigned to serve on the Portfolio Committee on Budget, Finance and Economic Development.
“I would like to congratulate Khupe and other MPs. May I say to them; I hope you shall serve national interests and not walk out when the head of State is here,” Mliswa said.
“I know Khupe is a seasoned politician who is mature. I hope she leads in that manner. I think we are here for national interests and a lot of time has been wasted resulting in this Parliament losing credibility because of us not putting national interests first. The President remains the head of State and Parliament is one of the institutions. I am hoping that during the State of the Nation Address (Sona), you shall be exemplary in showing the nation that national interests bind us.”
Mnangagwa is soon expected to present the Sona and officially open the Third Session of the Ninth Parliament on the same day.
While Mliswa claimed that MPs were not putting national interests first, last week the Zanu-PF chief whip Pupurai Togarepi praised opposition MPs saying that in the past months there was unanimity in Parliament, with both sides of the House debating issues of national interest.