Heritage Party Brigadier General Godfrey Miyanda
Heritage Party Brigadier General Godfrey Miyanda

BRIGADIER General Godfrey Miyanda has said that the appointments of opposition members of parliament to Cabinet are an affront not only to constitutional principles and guidelines, but also to moral law and the decency anticipated in the execution of statecraft.

In a statement to the media in reaction to he recent declaration by President Edgar Lungu’s special assistant for press and public relations, Amos Chanda, following appointment of UPND Sinazongwe member of parliament Richwell Siamunene as defence minister that the President had powers to appoint anyone without consulting anyone was misplaced, Brig Gen Miyanda said that the statement was misplaced, uninformed and “certainly not the holistic appreciation of the Zambian Constitution and other laws”.

Below is the full statement

STATEMENT ON THE APPOINTMENT OF OPPOSITION MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT TO THE EXECUTIVE
[By Brig Gen Godfrey Miyanda – 19th August 2015]

The recent blanket declaration by Mr Amos Chanda, the Special Assistant to the President that the President has power to appoint anyone without consulting anyone is misplaced, uninformed and certainly not the holistic appreciation of the Zambian Constitution and other laws. Such appointments of opposition Members of Parliament (as Cabinet Ministers and Deputy Ministers) offend the solemn provisions in our Constitution that guide the Executive in the democratic management of our country.

Such appointments add no value to the clear and bold democratic principles embedded in the Constitution but instead are an affront not only to those principles and guidelines, but also to the moral law and the decency anticipated and expected in the execution of statecraft.

Other than “beefing up” PF numbers in Parliament there is no justifiable reason for this condemnable and retrogressive action whose obvious purpose is to subvert our adopted and accepted democratic tenets that followed the re-introduction of the Multi-Party (many parties) system of government.

One of our Founding Fathers, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, in his sincere way, attempted to “kill” the opposition by introducing the “One Party Participatory Democracy” and succeeded momentarily; in the long run that action brought not only a disruption of normal political life but unbridled violence and its offshoot of perpetual hatred. It is timely to remember other Founding Fathers such as Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula, Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe, Nalumino Mundia, Zilole Mumba, Zenia Ndhlovu, Dona (Mama) Mumba of Petauke and many more of our heroes and heroines who fell foul of human ingenuity in perpetuating self-preservation (not forgetting the Third Term Bid in the recent past). We must not go down that path, not ever again. We must be wary of carelessly and conveniently fixing and interpreting Court judgements; it is worth remembering that it is a Court judgement that entrenched the despicable “One party Participatory Democracy”!

Granted that State House comments were based on the Judgement of the High Court, per His Lordship Judge Chalwe Muchenga. However it is important to point out that ordinarily judges make their decisions based on the case before them as well as the arguments presented and the legal authorities cited and relied on. It would be out of character for any judge to rule on something that was not presented to him/her and argued before them.

Article 46 (1) states that “There shall be such Ministers as may be appointed by the President”. It is contended that, standing alone, this Article is obviously a discretionary power that can be challenged on grounds of capriciousness and/or bad faith, which arguments we have not heard of. Additionally another aspect that speaks loudly against “executive poaching” of opposition MPs is the issue of public policy. It is contended that currently, under the much-maligned Republican Constitution, public policy is that throughout the tenure following an election, the Government must consist of the Executive appointed from the Ruling Party as well as separate and distinct Opposition Members of Parliament, to provide checks and balances in order to preserve the concept of multi-party democracy.

There is no point in boasting about the multi-party system when the President, who is the President of one of the political parties can willy-nilly destabilise and dismantle opposition parties by the deceptive ingenuity of “official or legalised poaching”.

Surely the President must be aware of Section 9 of the Parliamentary and Ministerial Code of Conduct Act which, quoted in full, reads “A person holding Ministerial office shall not do anything that is inconsistent with the principle of the collective responsibility of Ministers for the policy of the Government and the conduct of its affairs, and in particular shall not –
(a) Publicly contradict or disassociate himself from any policy adopted by Cabinet;
(b) Issue public statements criticising another person holding Ministerial office; or
(c) Make unauthorised disclosures of Cabinet discussions, decisions or documents”.

This provision derives its force from Article 52 of the Constitution. Thus an opposition MP appointed to Cabinet or the Executive is bound by collective responsibility; in other words such an appointee cannot speak for nor vote for his party while he remains appointed. What cannot be clear about this situation? Such a person has definitely crossed the floor. To cross the floor connotes changing one’s position vis-a-vis your political party by being a mere passenger while being an active advocate for the President and his Ruling Party!

Clearly our Constitution and other laws are NOT silent. A person so appointed CANNOT speak for nor represent his political party. Why must this trick not be deemed to be a Crossing of the Floor? Further the Preamble of the Constitution declares solemnly about our unity and oneness, as in this quote, inter alia “We the people….RESOLVE to uphold the values of democracy, transparency, accountability and good governance; AND FURTHER RESOLVE that Zambia shall forever remain a unitary, indivisible, MULTI-PARTY and democratic sovereign state”. Article 1 (1) rubs it in with these clear words “Zambia is a unitary, indivisible, MULTI-PARTY and democratic sovereign state”. More ominously, perhaps, Article 1 (4) declares and warns “This Constitution SHALL BIND all persons in the Republic of Zambia and all Legislative, Executive and Judicial organs of the State at all levels”. Why do Zambians sing and shout about a new Constitution when they accept the existing Constitution to be relegated to the rubbish dump with impunity?

The President is under oath to protect and defend our Constitution. If the President is serious about his clarion call of unity then he must revisit and abandon this practice which has not added value to his call for unity.

GODFREY MIYANDA,
BRIGADIER GENERAL,
HERITTAGE PARTY

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56 COMMENTS

  1. Get over it people!

    A precedence was set by the most highly regarded late President of Zambia who made the first such appointment since the advent of multi-party democracy.

    This is how it is. Leave with it. Win the next General Elections and change the manner of appointments.

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    • I am not a student of winner takes it all. It was wrong during levy M and still is with ECL. These appointments are being used by the Victor against the conquered. When the old alpha hippo male is defeated by the new young bull The old bull is humiliated by the young bull. The old bull is “mounted” by the young one as if he is a “girl” and chased out from the herd. The new king reigns. Kind of similar to Zambian president. Destroy and humiliate the opposition in the name of the powers vested……..

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    • wow… the General is alive!,,,,, the coming out of the General is serious bussiness, economic war in Zambia is about to break out under PF

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    • @Ndobo, what economical war, please Ba Goddy is peaceful General. Yes he is very much alive, he only regret that he helped Edgar to be president when he scared the hell out of Guy Scott over “instruments”, no need to remind that.
      Yes General is more RIGHT to refer to the CONSTITUTION, so that all can see in CAPITAL letters that EDGAR is extremely FRIVOLOUS over the balance of power.

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    • @Nubian naimwe what is that for, is it frustration that I didn’t call you for a weekend night out? How can you even dare comment over the genuine leader in a Miyanda?
      Edgar himself enjoyed that publication, its just abit late that he can’t fire “sacrificed lambs” from opposition. For example, what is Kaingu for in PF anyway?

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    • @Cactus
      Cactus is Miyanda in disguise. A grammarian can tell content, tone, and style. He is praising himself with a view to excite and incite debate. This is the reason why Field Ruwe called him a fraud his last article. Stop being a keyboard politician. Get out, hit the campaign trail and bring your dead Heritage Party to life, you lazy man. Your use of exclamation marks shows how angry you are—always writing with a red pen.

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    • @Cactus
      Cactus is Miyanda in disguise. A grammarian can tell from tone, structure, and style. Read all the “cactus” comments and you will notice a similar pattern. It is Miyanda’s effort to incite and excite debate. Some people are pleased to see the article and are treating it as a “come back.” What Miyanda needs to do is refrain from being a keyboard politician, hit the political trail and salvage his Heritage Party. To write is being the lazy self he has always been. He is a lazy politician.

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  2. It’s true that the constitution allows it but I believe the motive is also very clear. If a president wants to bring in MPs from opposition, it’s better to approach the party where that MP is coming from, if the opposition refuses, at least we will know there was an endeavour

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  3. Nkani zacigororo. Just because you are rich you admire your friends nicely dressed pigeons and leave your owls. It can’t never. Let’s leave each party with its members. Atase.

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  4. Appointment of opposition party members is done to dilute the opposition! A shame really! If opposition members were principled they wouldn’t accept but it us politics of the belly!

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  5. It is an observation worth considering intelligently. His view point makes sense until countered.

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  6. It’s like a breath of fresh air to read an issue-based argument with points, which the President with his law background, should at least understand. Now, lets wait for a response.

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    • Cactus, you are destined to have your expectations unfulfilled.

      This STUP!D Jameson Lungu is far too drunk with power and hungover from alcohol to even see straight enough to be able to read.

      His only objective is to eat while in power until Zambia ends up as another Zimbabwe

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    • @Annalist, you are right my expectations for a rational response to the Article will be unfulfilled.
      It’s just hoping against hope that maybe, just maybe this article would stir what’s left of a Lawyer in EL, even for a short while, before he lapses back. It’s a bit like hoping against hope and trying to push-starting a vehicle that you know deep down the engine is out of timing. Very exhausting.

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  7. Comment: Hah, hah, Hah! This man still breathes airs political? Wonders will never die, indeed!

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  8. Gen miyanda is a real man of principal. Unlike HH this man can never sell his soul for money or political power.

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  9. We simply have no morals in the manner we ran the affairs of our country, every sitting president dedicates his time machinating how he can prolong his stay in state house. Ba general talks sense but nobody in authority cares, after morality will never win you an election!

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  10. here is a little song for Miyanda:
    ‘ Miyanda talks when he want and farts when he want’ ……repeat the chorus!!
    Ba Miyanda, how does KK come into your thinking? leave the old man alone. The era you are talking about is long gone.

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  11. Well said Miyanda but you should also have touched other even more serious issues about Lungu s governance, borrowing, electricity, wild life, political harassment, the kwacha downfall etc the list is endless while we sit like fools watching then plunder our country

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  12. Isn’t the above news stale? Where was the Gen when Mwanawasa appointed several members of the opposition to cabinet? Hasn’t even LAZ commented on this? So is the General just commenting to remain relevant to Zambian politics before he claims another check ( cheque) for keeping the name of Heritage party in the news. It does not matter how many times people speak about this issue, the PF has already done it and the party will continue appointing people from bathe opposition to cabinet. Mwanawasa nearly appointed the General as VP. Has he forgotten? So anali Kati ba Gen?

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    • @Pyscho, the fact that you have failed to argue point-for-point with what BGGM has raised in this very clear article confirms he has very credible points.

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  13. He sounds like a lawyer and a General indeed, Chagwa is no match with the General.
    Teach Chagwa , he is a half baked lawyer. Thanks General

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  14. I have respect for General Miyanda he is one of the most displined principled respected and full of wisdom politicians whenever he speaks attention must be given to his sentiments

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  15. Suppose General Miyanda had won the Presidential election, from which members of parliament would he have formed a cabinet? Would he have divided all the portfolios between himself, his self and the nominated MPs only?
    The constitution of Zambia is the SUPREME law of the land General. The Ministerial Code of conduct is subservient to the constitution, therefore, since it gags a minister, it is outright illegal. The President is in order and he has not breeched the constitution. The person who takes up a ministerial post AGAINST his conscience is the one who is at fault. There is an easy way out. It is called – RESIGNING.

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    • You have responded very well, as has LP above.

      Our current Constitution is not breached by these appointments. Full stop!

      On the political bit, if Miyanda is so intelligent and speaks like a lawyer, why is it that it is EL who is President of Zed?

      Please, don’t insult Zambians by saying that we did not vote correctly.

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    • @The only thinker, Clearly, you have not understood the article. And the fact that you have failed to argue point-for-point with what BGGM has raised in this very clear article confirms it.

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  16. Its because of people without sense of shame like Miyanda, who keep barking with no tangible solutions. The gen has outlived his usefulness to the current political landscape. ba Miyanda just retire ,this is a different era boss. Your village concept cant work now. Give EL a chance, the man is less than a year in his job. You are talking like a messaia who can perform wonders naimwe. Boss accept that you have failed in politics. Try farming sir. Its why I cant do politics kuti wakota ukulolela plot 1 and live a miserable. Pray to Jesus we can’t all be presidents. I am enjoying myself in Lufwanyama district, kulima nkuweme kumonamo luboni mwisho.

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    • @ kapoma kabaso – You are a bird that was born in a cage..when you see other birds flying in the sky, you think they are foolish!!

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    • @Ba Kapoma Kabaso, It’s quite obvious you have not understood BGGM’s article, just as you have not understood the Village Concept even after all this time. Are you at least aware that the ‘inkongole’ the PF Govt is getting in form of EUROBONDS is coming from a syndicate of Countries were the Village Concept exists under a different name?.

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  17. It’s good to hear from Mr Miyanda. We need your voice and you have disappointed may followers. you have a legal right to voice your opinion but you did the same with FTJ

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  18. WHO SAID THAT THE BRIGADIER ONLY RESURFACES DURING THE ELECTION TIME? WSS IT FIELD RUWE? THE BRIG. IS BACK AND IT’S NOT EVEN 2916 YET. YOU PEOPLE RISK EITHER BEING SHOT DOWN OR BEING TAKEN ON LEGALLY. HE WON’T EVEN NEED LAWYERS BECAUSE HES SOMEWHAT NOT ONLY MILITARY-WISE BUT ALSO LEGAL-WISE. STOP IT NOW OR YOU WILL RISK LOSING EVERYTHING BY MESSING WITH SUCH A MAN WHO ONCE HAD A FOOT IN STATE HOUSE ONLY TO BE DRIBBLED BY NOT MAYUKA BUT YOU KNOW WHO. THE LATE MASTER OF THEM ALL .

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  19. Field Luwe, so the General didn’t “disappear? Please write again something, like, blur, blur, blur.

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  20. Welcome back General, we salute you sir, especially for the brief history lesson as Zambians are very forgetful…they have forgotten about KK’s bloody brutal regime and his infamous redbrick house, imagine just last year Dora was throwing insults at old man Sata and his Party, today she is wearing the selfsame PF gear…additional most of these MPs accept all these positions without consulting the very people who put them in Parliament.

    General have you registered your SIM card with the authorities now?

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  21. The general is not taken seriously by most because he has a tendency of not being loud mouthed yet he has some extra ordinary analytical ability that generates informative debate. I would interest him (with his willingness) to serve in my administration as a Minister of Home Affairs for specific tasks:
    a) that of cleaning up the mess and instilling discipline in the police service and all investigative wings
    b) decongestion of prisons through speedy justice
    c) deal conclusively with purported corruption

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  22. Comment: Miyanda still mourns over the fact that all three MPs from his Heritage Party were appointed to cabinet positions by a previous MMD president.

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  23. @Gundixy! Uli cikopo sana. So to you just because ECL became president by accident you think he is more intelligent than the General! Its like saying those children who are born to parents who live in kabulonga and go to expensive good schools are more intelligent than children in Chawama! The Generals article is beyond your shallow PF cadresh brain! Don’t shamelessly expose your dullness!

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  24. 1. @Kimbanguist at 08.44 pm: I ignore your unnecessary insults but anyway will answer your query. KK comes into the picture bcoz he banned formation of opposition parties in the 70s, and made it a crime to form such a party. After a lot of turmoil in the country MMD forced KK to capitulate and remove the banning clause from the Constitution in 1991, nearly 20 years later. Remember SM Kapwepwe’s UPP? N. Mundia’s party?PF has followed the KK formula by trying to revive the One Party thing. We must NOT go down that path!
    2. @ The Only Thinking Zambian at 10.28 pm: you have misled yourself and other bloggers. The Code of Conduct is a creature of the Constitution under Article 52 that states “All Ministemrs and Deputy Ministers SHALL conduct themselves, during their tenure of office, in…

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    • Haha. I didn’t see this before commenting below. Glad to note you have taken the time again to respond to comments. Awesome of you to bother.

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  25. Have a lot of respect for the Lone Ranger. Last year he took the time to respond directly to people on LT. What he wrote is worth reading and he took even the harshest of criticism and gave a measured and enlightening response to each. Some of the bloggers may not have returned to the article and read his responses to them but if they ever do it will open their eyes, particularly on matters that come up in relation to himself and first prez.

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  26. Law Aassociation of Zambia can you comment. What is the different between GBM crossing the floor and the what the appointed Ministers from opposition parties have done? Have they not crossed the floor too.
    LMT

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  27. I agree completely with General Miyanda. Our democracy has been compromised ever since LPM decided to undermine the opposition through such appointments. In a country where MPs are of very low calibre, this impacts hugely on the country in many areas of governance. We have seen political prostitution becoming the norm and the route towards a credible constitution blocked. ECL may be a lawyer but he has not shown any understanding of the long term damage being done by his brand of governance.

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  28. Is it the duty of the ruling party or president to make the opposition strong? Stop being idealistic and getting high on pipe dreams. In REAL politics it is no different from a war and am surprised the good general misses this point. Any ruling party worth it’s pound of salt will do its best to stay in power and one of the ways of achieving that is by keeping the opposition (enemy) weak. The ruling party is under no illusion that the opposition has its best interest at heart and must never live in such a delusional state. Every single day does not pass without a comment from the opposition demeaning the ruling party and its president. The aim is to make the people see the PF as useless and unworthy to govern. The PF must also not lose any opportunity to weaken its opposition. Simple art…

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  29. @Cactus
    Cactus is Miyanda in disguise. A grammarian can tell content, tone, and style. He is praising himself with a view to excite and incite debate. This is the reason why Field Ruwe called him a fraud his last article. Stop being a keyboard politician. Get out, hit the campaign trail and bring your dead Heritage Party to life, you lazy man. Your use of exclamation marks shows how angry you are—always writing with a red pen.

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  30. BA kapolyo, clearly u have not understood anything of what the General has said. Typical of a pf cadre like kashimba chimbwili. A shallow understanding of democracy.

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  31. @Cactus
    Cactus is Miyanda in disguise. A grammarian can tell from tone, structure, and style. Read all the “cactus” comments and you will notice a similar pattern. It is Miyanda’s effort to incite and excite debate. Some people are pleased to see the article and are treating it as a “come back.” What Miyanda needs to do is refrain from being a keyboard politician, hit the political trail and salvage his Heritage Party. To write is being the lazy self he has always been. He is a lazy politician.

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  32. @ mediapro, LOL, you give me more credit than I deserve by mistaking me to Ba Miyanda, but thank you very much. I take it as a compliment. My wife, who is the only person I have told about my pseudo, saw your comment and showed me. We laughed, and I am sure the General will laugh when he sees it too.
    But seriously, I live in the UK. and based in what I have observed from here, for our Country Zambia to move forward, we have to be issue based in our debates, decision making and planning. It turns out the General is issue based.
    And do not underestimate the power of the social online media. Obama uses it, so does David Cameron etc..

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  33. @Cactus,
    You lie about telling your wife. You are Miyanda. I can see through your writing. Obama and Cameron hit the pavement to win the election unlike you who sits in the house responding to bloggers most who will never join your party. Don’t just beam at the few praises. Get out, you lazy man.

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  34. Only God’s law will stand the test of time.
    Human laws are selfish, egoistic, protective and very elastic.
    General you have a point having been in power at one time and now seeing clearly from the other side. People in power have no eyes until they are kicked out.
    I see a change of govt next year!!

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  35. The General writes and argues very intelligently and convincingly. But let me pose this question: supposing the General won the 2016 Presidential elections but only managed to win a few parliamentary sets, where was he going get MPs to make up his cabinet?

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