The Parliamentary Committee on Privileges today summoned the Pacific Group over a press statement which company issued in response to remarks made in the House by Hon. Sameer Suleman during the last Meeting of Parliament.

On 8th October, 2020, Honourable Sameer Suleiman, MP for Blantyre South East Constituency in his contributions in the House, stated that Malawians are partly contributing to the land problems by giving foreigners a lot of land to buy, i.e, Lebanese and Chinese, that 80% of Limbe is currently owned by two individuals, one of them owns over 50 hectares of land where he is doing fish farming, that Ministry of Land should be very strict with the foreigners.

On October 24th, 2020, the Pacific Limited published a press statement claiming that although the Member of Parliament refrained from directly naming the concerned party, it is the only entity that owns a 50 hectares of land that operates a  fish farm in Limbe. In the statement, Pacific Limited requested Hon. Suleman to withdraw allegations that the Honorable Member made on the floor of the house citing that the allegations were unsubstantiated.

When asked to explain the statement, owner of Pacific Limited, Faizal Aboo offered an apology saying that his institution does not want to tussle with the Honourable Member, as the Members have the best interest of Malawians at heart.

In response, the Committee requested Pacific Limited to offer an apology and retract the statement that the institution made in October 2020.

The Constitution of the Republic of Malawi under cap 60 (1) provides that the Speaker, every Deputy Speaker and every member of the National Assembly shall, except in cases of treason, be privileged from arrest while going to, returning from or while in the precincts of the National Assembly and shall not, in respect of any utterances that forms part of the proceedings in the National Assembly, be amenable to any other action or proceedings in any court, tribunal or body other than Parliament.

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