MPs do not need permission to hold meetings – Lungu

Home Affairs Minister Edgar Lungu says Members of Parliament do not need to get Police permission to hold meetings in their constituencies.
Lungu in a Ministerial statement in Parliament July 17, 2013 on the observance of the public order Act in relation to Members of parliament, whether they need to seek authority from Police to visit their constituencies said the law states that Members of Parliament do not need to get Police permission to hold meetings.

He says government is in the process of enlightening the Police on the provisions of the public order Act.

Lungu adds that government is also considering reviewing the public order Act in the long-term to ensure that Members of Parliament enjoy the same privileges and rights.

And Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini said he was concerned with the situation were Members of Parliament were being asked to get Police permission to hold meetings in their constituencies.

Dr Matibini told the house that he had a productive meeting with the Home Affairs Minister and his Justice counterpart over the matter.

He stressed the need to strike a balance between the public order Act and the need for Members of Parliament to perform their functions without hindrance.