Parliament Friday adjourned Sine Die (indefinitely) after meeting for five weeks, with budget review being the main agenda.
Apart from approving the reviewed K2.3 Trillion budget for the 2020/2021 financial year, the lawmakers also endorsed the Appropriation Bill and Southern Region Water Board Water Project Bill, 15 ministerial statements and seven committee reports.
Leader of Opposition Kondwani Nankhumwa expressed worry over excessive borrowing by the government from domestic financial institutions.
“In a country where we are striving on domestic borrowing, inflation rates remain high. This is the reason why I was asking the Minister to say of course we are in the middle of the pandemic, but this government should try as much as possible to live within the means so that the economy of Malawi won’t slide back to the lowest level,” he said.
He also cautioned the government against exporting this year’s maize produce, stressing that some parts of the country have already started facing effects of climate change and that they would need social and economic support.
He also said that the government should review the Covid-19 cash transfer programme, alleging that it did not target vulnerable and low-income households.
Leader of the House Richard Chimwendo Banda hailed the House for lively participation in the deliberations amidst Covid-19 challenges.
“It has been a successful time in Parliament because all the bills, reports have been discussed and passed. The main agenda of the budget review was done and members were also able to raise critical issues,” he said.
President Lazarus Chakwera also had a chance to answer questions in the House, as per Section 89 of the Constitution.
Vice President Saulos Chilima also had his time in the National Assembly, in his capacity as Minister of Economic Planning and Development, where he answered questions.