The ongoing infighting in the former governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) took a new twist on Monday in parliament after Leader of Opposition Kondwani Nankhumwa wrote the office of the speaker notifying her that he has removed from the Public Accounts Committee Mangochi South West Legislator Shadreck Namalomba who until yesterday was Committee Chairperson.
Lately Namalomba and Nankhumwa have been engaging in a verbal war with Namalomba who is DPP’s spokesperson accusing Nankhumwa of ill-treating him in the August House by among other things relocating him from his initial seat which was much closer to the Speaker and placing him among the backbenchers.
Two weeks ago Namalomba was among a grouping of DPP legislators who converged at party President Peter Mutharika’s residence in Mangochi where they elected George Chaponda as new Leader of Opposition replacing Nankhumwa, a decision which was later successfully challenged through the High court.
In what could be seen as a direct revenge on the MPs who masterminded his removal as Leader of Opposition, Nankhumwa has made several changes to the composition of the parliamentary committees with Namalomba being the biggest casualty as he has surrendered his PAC chairmanship.
Following his removal, the Committee proceeded to conduct elections to elect a new Chairperson and DPP legislator for Zomba Chisi Mark Bottoman was elected Committee Chairperson unopposed.
Speaking after his election Bottoman said his main task will be to ensure that all outstanding government audit queries are disposed of within the shortest time possible.
“Yes indeed we had elections today where I have been elected as Committee Chairperson replacing honourable Namalomba who is no longer a member of this committee and when we met during the health break I was elected unopposed and my first task will be liaising with relevant stakeholders to ensure that the process of appointing a new Auditor General is expedited as the country has now stayed for two years without an Auditor General,” said Bottoman.
Meanwhile in a statement released on Tuesday morning the former PAC Chair has thanked former President Peter Mutharika for trusting him with the responsibility of serving in the Public Accounts Committee.
“I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to his Excellency Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika former president of the Republic of Malawi and president of the Democratic Progressive Party-DPP for bestowing me the opportunity to serve my country in one of the most powerful committees of parliament, The Public Accounts Committee for two years until today due to the reshuffle of parliamentary committees by the current leadership of Opposition in Parliament,” reads the statement.
Since losing the 2020 fresh Presidential elections, the former governing party has been no stranger to chaos as on several occasions it has taken the intervention of the courts to reverse some decisions which some members have been challenging deeming them as being personal aimed at just frustrating their political careers.