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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Owning a passport not a right – NCC

General News Owning a passport not a right - NCC

Scores of people waiting for their turn to apply for new passports

THE National Constitutional Conference (NCC) on Wednesday unanimously rejected a clause that sought to make acquisition of a Zambian passport a right to every citizen.

The commissioners agreed that making acquisition of a passport every citizen’s right might put the security of the nation at risk.

Article 63 clause 4 of the Mun’gomba draft constitution and the recommendations of the human rights committee state that every citizen has a right to a passport.

Contributing to the debate, commissioner Ronnie Shikapwasha said the clause can be a danger to the country.

Lieutenant General Shikapwasha said acquisition of passports should be controlled.

He said a passport is an important document that can tarnish or build the image of the nation.
“Citizens use Zambian passports to represent the image of Zambia when they travel abroad,” Lt. Gen Shikapwasha said.

Commissioner Peter Machungwa said although freedom to have a national document such as a passport is important, there is need for Government to regulate it.

Dr Machungwa said the State should have powers to ensure that the document is not given to people with ill motives.

“Most of the people who have been arrested for drug trafficking in other countries are not Zambians, but they masquerade as Zambians by obtaining passports,” Dr Machungwa said.

He said it is important for commissioners to maintain articles that have worked well for the country, adding that not everything that is in the current constitution is bad.

Commissioner Robby Chizyuka said adopting the article is a danger to the security of the country.
Major Chizyuka urged delegates not to entertain articles that will bring anarchy and deter national development.

Commissioner Sally Chiwama said it is cardinal that issuance of passports is regulated.

[Zambia Daily Mail]

44 COMMENTS

  1. these bast.ards are living in the stone age era.

  2. Freedom of movement is a fundamental human right in the UN charter.
    Restricting who can have access to a passport when one is already a citizen means curtailing a significant human right.
    It is Myopic thinking that the security of a country is compromised by ones entitlement to a passport.
    Criminals and law abiding citizens are an element that are interchangable and short of a machine that can predict ones behaviour then you only want to deny political opponents the right to access this document.
    Just tighten security on issuing NRCs and Passports to only people that qualify for them but corruption is a vice that continues to erode our society.

  3. I think the ALL the commisioners are DULL and it is sad that we charged them with making the constistution.

    The Mungomba Draft constittution was right. It talked about the Passport and NOT Citizen ship. Citizenship is not a right, we all agree on that , but once you are a citizen, you have the right to get a passport because how else can you then travel. Making a passport a privilege will give right to ill motivated government to ground anybody they wished.

    These Commisioners have confused citizenship with passport. Those are two different things. Just like anybody who has been proved to be a Zambia by some legal process has a right to obtaining a National Registration Card, and that gives them a right to vote.

    How dull and shallow minded can these people be really?

  4. Major Chizyuka,,Doctor Machungwa ,General Shikapwasha to name but a few of the commisioners exposing their ignorance and lack of exposure.
    I have just began to have interest in what Mungomba had worked on.
    From my perspective,this should have been adopted as our republican constitution and not what these money mongers have embarrased us with.Fools.

  5. A citizen by birth or by statutory means should access all privileges and rights accorded them. How will they tell, on first application, that someone is a potential security risk? The NCC is taking us back to the the pre-colonial days, i.e. when Zambia was under the BSA authority. We do not need a Kyrgyz-type rebellion to claim what we are being denied. Awe sure.

  6. If a Zambian citizen is able to afford to travel out of the country , and wishes to do so ,then he/she’s gonna need a passport . If a citizen on the other hand is not likely to have the need to travel outside of Zambia , then he/she’s not gonna have the need for a passport. Simple.

  7. Ba Lord Sith or whatever,a passport can be used for ID purposes and not just travel.
    What the discussion is about is that you can be denied a passport with all your travel plans and finances because someone deams you a threat to national security.

  8. Guys think logically through this, they are not saying they will not be issuing passports but rather have it controlled which makes sense. making a passport a right would increase the chances of these passports finding themselves in the wrong hands. The Zambian passports is one of the most respected in Africa and this status would easily be lost if we were to let them on the loose. This decision is good for all of us. As a Zambian you have right to freedom of movement throughout Zambia but when you cross the border you are representing the millions of Zambians. and honestly this needs to be controlled.

  9. what nonsense, the issuing of all passports in all countries is already controlled. just wasting oxygen these people. after next year let us ensure that nobody who sat on the NCC will get a passport

  10. #9 Chipena, I think you are the one who need to think logically, Citizenship needs to be controlled yes and as somebody has said above, the issuance of passports is already controlled anyway. The issue is if you are a citizen, then you have a right to a passport and the government can’t deny you a passport and the path to citizenship is the NRC. You can’t get a Passport if you dont have an NRC. If you have an NRC, you are a citizen and have the right to VOTE. How does that compromise security?

    I will tell you what compromise security. It is the corrupt officials at NRC office who give fake NRC to foreigners to obtain the zambian passports. So what the authorities need to do is get their act sorted and deal with the corruption at NRC and passport office, and not use this legislation.

  11. No education=it is not a right, No hospital treatment= it is not a right, no water =it is not a right, No housing= it is not a right, even a passport to show that you are a Zambian, NO.. NO.. NO ….=it is not a right.

  12. control the issuance of passports but be careful not to denie citizens identity, we do have rights to identification and passport is one document that is used also for identification sake, and not just for travelling.

  13. in most American States, driving, for example, is a priveledge not a right. Meaning it can be revoked or denied when authorities deem it right, and there is nothing you can do about it. Am sure that is what the NCC is implying.

  14. The only place that I know of that had a law restricting the issuance of passports was apartheid South Africa. You actually had to get permission to leave the country. I obviously haven’t been to all parts of the world, but have certainly been to many countries in Africa, Europe and I currently live in the USA. I am not aware of any other place with such retrogressive thinking.

    If, as Dr Machungwa observed, foreigners have used the Zambian passport to commit crimes abroad, why punish the innocent Zambian citizens by depriving them of a Zambian document?

    Ultimately, every Zambian should have the right of movement. I should be able to visit my relatives, friends, or even go out as a tourist, in other parts of the world when I want, not when the government decides that I can.

  15. LATEST
    Polish Presidents jet crashes killing the President, his wife and senior government officials. Food for thought for our own RB to slow down we dont need another state funeral to gobble the much needed K20 bn.

  16. And I think we should have put in an age limit to the people participating in the NCC. Everyone over 55 years should have been excluded. These guys will not be around to face the consequences of their actions, which is why their thinking is very myopic. We will be the ones saddled with a useless constitution while these fellas are peacefulyy sleeping. Seriously, these are the people with extremely backward ideas. How can owning a passport be a danger to national security. It is like saying having an NRC is a security risk!

  17. #18 msana wanzili Thats something worth to think about. BNow you see many Zambians would wish that to happen so that there can be change of government and its leadership. arguing that the current government is not performing to the expected standard. PLEASE dont get me wrong am not wishing ill for RB but am assume what other people would be thinking.There others too who have mentioned that to me that they wouldnt like to see him live..But you see life is for God. Thats food for thought, cheers mate.

  18. # 8 Donqueen……..Yes , a passport can also be used for I D purposes , especially if you are a foreigner in another country , but that is not it’s primary purpose . In Zambia we have NRC’s and that is the main form of I D.
    The matter of being denied a passport for security reasons is nothing new , is it ? …Take the former soviet union for example or their comrades in socialist Zambia of the 70’s and 80’s ?
    …..In the contemporary era , the so called global fight on terror led by the US and it’s western allies has even further broadened the meaning of ‘national security’ . So whether it is a right enshrined in the constitution or not , one can still be denied a passport .

  19. On #21 meant to say But Now you see……not (BNow you see)….RB but am assuming…not (RB but am assume) then dont mind about other errors.

  20. Zambia: Owning a passport not a right – NCC

    Is Zambia a country or a prison? Do we need permission to leave from the government? Of course having a passport is a right.

  21. #24 Mrk
    Are the same old Mrk, if so welcome back countryman we definately missed your contributions. While you were away LT and ZWD were under siege

  22. A passport should be a right. And like any other right, it is not absolute, meaning, it can be taken away. In the case of Zambia, only those persons convicted of crimes abroad should lose that right. There is need to strenghten the issuance of NRCs. I was recently in Zambia, and needed to change my NRC from the old one to new one in order to get the new passport. I was shocked with what I saw at the NRC Office in Kamwala where foreigners, especially those of Somali origin, could give K50pin and get an NRC, then get a Zambian passport! There is total corruption at NRC and Passport Offices.

  23. The problem is corruption in the system which allows our cousins, the Congolais, and our brothers who have given us Prophet TB Joshua, olo amaNai as they are known, to get Zambian passports. Fight the causes and not the effects.

  24. Yambi ama comments ya MBUSHI ishine shine!!!!! Mwembushi mwe whats wrong with controlling the issuance of passports?

  25. IN this case I think if you imply that a passport is a right then every zambian will have to be issued a passport as it is with NRC I don’t know if there are countries in the world that do this AS IN ISSUE PASSPORTS TO ALL CITIZENS. EVERYONE STILL HAS A RIGHT TO APPLY FOR A PASSPORT CAN YOU IMAGINE IF A MAN HIS WIFE WITH 10 CHILDREN IN MPOROKOSO OR CHADIZA ARE HANDED PASSPORTS AND THEY HAVE NO FOOD ON THEIR TABLE N THEN A CERTAIN OGA SAYS I’LL GIVE YOU 50 PIN PER PASSPORT….wAT DO YOU THINK BA TATA WILL DO AFTERALL HE’S PROLLY NEVER GONNA NEED THE THING ANYWAY, THIS IS JUST ONE OF THE MANY WAYS IT CAN BE A THREAT TO NATIONAL SECURITY. WE DON’T HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING THE WESTERN COUNTRIES DO BECAUSE THEY ARE AT A STAGE OF DEVELOPEMENT WAY AHEAD OF US AND THEY CAN REGULATE THESE ISSUES…

  26. Mukwa ginger Brandy (#29): I don’t what you are thinking … a right is not given to you, you demand for it and/or exercise it without the authorities witholding it from you. An NRC, for example, is not brought to your house, but you go to demand for it as a citizen. For a passport, you can demand for it whenever you intend to travel, and the authorities will deliver without hesitation as long as you have a birth certificate and/or NRC to show that you are a Zambian citizen.

  27. #29 Mukwa ginger Brandy:
    The issue at hand is not that the government should go around issuing passports to all people in the country. I think the idea is that any Zambian citizen should be able to obtain a Zambian passport when they apply for one simply by virtue of being a Zambian. I should not be denied a passport because someone in government does not like my reason for traveling.

    However, as it is, the government can refuse to issue a passport to any Zambian citizen simply because they do not want that person to travel outside the country. Now if a passport were a right, the government would have to give you an explanation for the withdrawal of that right. But if it is not a right, you have no recourse when the your passport application is rejected.

  28. This is probably the most sane argument Shikapwasha & Machungwa have advanced. A passport remains a government document hence they can withdraw it from a person who abuses the document or is a flight risk if he is under criminal investigation. There is no way we can have a situation where non-Zambians are getting issued with a Zambian passport all in the name of doing illegal things. Those opposing to this are not only ignorant about what a right & a priviledge is and I suggest they read more about the two to familiarie themselves. Thanks Shikapwasha. We want to see a much more transparent process which eliminates corruption.

  29. #15 Ba Handsome Kolwe, mwilaisebanya. Driving and the Driver’s license is a right until you break the law. It is not a privilege. Probably you are discussing in the early 1960’s. Probably some of you are confused by the terminologies used here. So, yama, I might need to give you another example. Education from K through 12 in the US is a right, but you can be expelled from school if you break school rules. That by itself does not make it a privilege. Ala research isuma before you make such sill.y mistakes. You mentioned in some states, mention one state in the US were driver’s license is a privilege. Problem you guys you try to find out about such issues from people in jail.

  30. There is a proviso on a passport that it remains the property of the government and it can be withdrawn at anytime. As someone states above, it should be given to anyone who applies for it. If a Mporokoso man feels he needs the passport, as long as he has the money to pay the necessary fees. Whether he will travel or not is not an issue.
    But again, the biggest problem in Zambia is poor record keeping. When applying for a passport or an NRC using a birth certificate and reapplying for a passport, the officers still want you to provide an affidavit of birth. What is the point? The trouble is the documents are sold at markets for traders to wrap fish in them.

  31. Zambia twasebana. Shikapwasha is waste minister Zambia has ever had. Everytime he opens his mouth, he speaks marubish. Shame on him.

  32. Once again yesterday’s politicians have failed to produce tomorrow’s constitution! I hope that MPs will reject this. Otherwise, this constitution will be up for review even before the ink dries.

  33. What is needed is to prove citizenship first. Next is to prove ‘good standing.’ Thereafter every citizen has a right to a national and international identity document. The passport still belongs to the issuing authority BUT ONLY on application to a court of law, with appropriate evidence adduced and debated should it be withdrawn from a citizen. Security features of the passport are more important than citizenship in preventing wrong people getting their hands on it. But having said that, there are forged passports all over the world. Recent case in Dubai shows that.

  34. #32 Abwenzi, I think you have missed the whole point. You point out that “There is no way we can have a situation where non-Zambians are getting issued with a Zambian passport all in the name of doing illegal things.” Well, I don’t think anybody is arguing that Zambian passports should be issued to foreigners. The arguments I have seen on this forum are that Zambian passports should be a right of Zambian citizens. If foreigners are being issued Zambian passports, then somebody up there is breaking the law and must be arrested and prosecuted. My argument, and that of many others on this blog, is: if a foreigner has broken the law, why deny a Zambian citizen the right to a Zambian passport?

  35. This is really really really really s.i.l.l.y! Why cant a citizen have a passport? If he wants to leave the country it is his right unless he has committed a crime!! What kind of primitivity is this? Do they think Zambians will run away from their country and leave politicians constituenceless? Ukutumpa!

  36. govt could still regulate and control issuance of passports even if it was deemed a right. all the other rights we enjoy are regulated. schooling is a human right but people do not have to carry guns to school for example. what govt wants to do is use passports for political control. the power to decide who can travel in and out.

  37. Mukwa Ginger Brandy
    1 day, 13 hrs ago

    This posting brought sorrow to my heart and tears to my eyes. I just can’t believe it! It is very painful. This argument hurt my head!

Comments are closed.

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