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Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Mutembo Nchito takes tribunal to Constitutional Court

General News Mutembo Nchito takes tribunal to Constitutional Court

DPP Mutembo Nchito addressing delegates during the 3rd International Association of Prosecutors (IAP) Conference for the Africa-India Ocean Region in Livingstone at Zambezi Sun Hotel
Suspended DPP Mutembo Nchito
AS THE Annel Silungwe Tribunal began sitting yesterday, suspended Director of Public Prosecutions Mutembo Nchito commenced another legal action in a different court to stop the proceedings.

Mr Nchito described the tribunal appointed to probe his activities while in office as defunct, accusing it of going against the recently amended republican Constitution.

In his petition filed at the Constitutional Court registry yesterday, Mr Nchito accused the tribunal sittings as unconstitutional following President Edgar Lungu’s assent to the amended Constitution on January 5, 2016.

However, Article 16 of the new Constitution states: “(1) Unless otherwise provided under the Constitution as amended, proceedings pending before court or tribunal shall continue to be heard and determined by the same court or tribunal or may be transferred to a corresponding court or tribunal established under the Constitution as amended.

Further, Article 16 (2) states: “Unless otherwise provided under the Constitution as amended, a matter or proceeding that, immediately before the effective date, is pending before a commission, office or authority shall continue before the same commission, office or authority or corresponding commission, office or authority established under the new Constitution as amended.”

Mr Nchito has accused the Annel Silungwe Tribunal, conducted by three former Chief Justices of Zambia, of going against the new Constitution Amendment Act no. 2 of 2016 which he said in Part 13 dealt with the office of the DPP, and rendered the tribunal defunct.

He charged that the constitutional backing on which the tribunal was established had no legal effect as the law was repealed and replaced by a new Constitution process. He has asked the Constitutional Court to declare that “That the said Constitution of Zambia Amendment Act number 2 of 2016 repeals among others Part 4 of the Constitution which contained Article 58 under which the tribunal in issue was created.

“That it be determined and declared that the insistence by the defunct tribunal to deal with the petitioner is unconstitutional in the light of the law as it now stands,” he said in the petition.

Mr Nchito has been fighting the setting up of a tribunal to investigate him as DPP including its decision to sit in camera, arguing that the secrecy would take away the transparency from the public nature of the charges against him.

The Annel Silungwe Tribunal began sitting chaired by Mr Justice Silungwe sitting with former Chief Justice Matthew Ngulube and retired Chief Justice Ernest Sakala after being sworn in by President Lungu on 16 March 2015.

The tribunal began sitting yesterday after Mr Nchito lost another bid in the Supreme Court last week to stop its proceedings.

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23 COMMENTS

    • Arguing on technicalities rather than on MERIT the merits or demerits of accusations against him makes Nchito really look guilty of what he stands accused of. Okay, we know there’s a new constitution now, but please tell us; DID YOU ACTUALLY DO WHAT YOU’RE BEING ACCUSED OF? UNDER WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES, AND EXACTLY HOW did you do it? This is the truth that Zambians want to hear from you.

  1. Am beginning to think that something is wrong with mutembo nchito because he seems to be dogging something he knows better. He took FTJ and the likes of Bwezani to court and many he persecuted.I think it’s fair for him to do what he did to others.

  2. Why is it that judges fear courts which they subject their friends to? I solute medical doctors who take medicine whivh they give their friends.

    • @Doom, agreed; however, I know doctors who knowingly promote drugs that are being trialed without informing the patients to whom they are administering it because they are getting a cut. They would NEVER administer those drugs to themselves or their personal patients… Judges, on the other hand know exactly how ridiculous most sentences are…

  3. This guy has committed a lot of crimes he knows that he will be arrested after all this you can run but you can hid you took Presidents to court, former commanders in the Zambia defence forces citizens but now the last dance is yours they will get you.

  4. When Nawakwi pointed out the flaws in the Amended constitution regarding the position of Deputy Ministers working unconstitutionally, which stance LAZ recently alluded to, people called her unpalatable names. Now, again, a DPP’s removal in the newly Amended constitution has been somewhat affected.
    It is very sad but clear that the process started by an individual, now in the grave, targeting opponents, still subsists in today’s Zambia, to the extent of using a constitution to shut someone up.
    It is also evident the country is in a hurry to develop. However, we seem to have willfully misdirected ourselves.

  5. PF should not let this man behave like a surrogate president (i.e test tube president). He should be shown where he belongs – Jail. May the bones of FTJ rise up and fight him and the cartel.

    • @7. PF is full of thugs (they know how to chop off ears now).
      There is nothing wrong with a Zambian asserting his rights. Why shud we be afraid of politicians? Mutembo is a very good example of a Zambian who will not cringe before an ignorant politician. FTJ was a lazo.

  6. NCHITO IS PERFECTLY RIGHT.
    ‘Unless otherwise provided under the Constitution as amended,..’
    This is not rocket science to interpret. It says, UNLESS PROVIDED OTHERWISE UNDER THE AMENDED CONSTITUTION.
    This means simply that IF the new constitution provides a DIFFERENT method of dealing with a case, the case cannot continue under the same e.g. tribunal. Here is an example. Suppose you were to be killed by hanging, but the new law OUTLAWS hanging and brings in DROWNING, you have to be killed by a new way that is provided for in the new law. Therefore, you must now be subjected to drowning instead. Nchito now must fave the Judicial Complaints Commission and not the tribunal, which is now OUTLAWED. The Supreme Court knew this. GRZ 1- Nchito 2.

  7. Meaning the new constitution has provided guide lines regarding removal of DPP. That is the “(1) Unless otherwise provided under the Constitution as amended,’How is the Tribunal going to conduct it self if it didnt understand such simple plain English? Make local language versions then and until then, why in a hurry to crusify a soul.

  8. State Counsel my foot!! Your tribunal came into being way before the new constitution was assented to and so shall continue.Are you telling us that current mps without g12 certificate are also in office illegally?

    • WHERE OTHERWISE PROBIDED FOR IN THE AMENDED CONSTITUTION.
      The amended Constitution has not provided otherwise for sitting MPs, ministers or deputy ministers SIR! Other tribunals can also continue, but ONLY in cases of judicial officers, the amended constitution has abolished tribunals.

  9. I believe Annel Silungwe, being a principal member of the Technical committee knew exactly what to do with ongoing constitutional committees and tribunals. I doubt there is a sudden cutoff when an amendment is put into effect. Good luck, Mutembo. Like I keep saying all the traps you laid out are now right in front of you. Tread with a mindset different from the one you used to set them… you are now the hunted, remember.

  10. We have said it before that this man is criminal and is hoping that ECL will lose 2016 elections and everything falls. This is not fair.
    This man has prosecuted many people on account of wrong doing. He proved them wrong after they defended themselves. Why is he running away from defending himself. He knows that he is guilty.

    • @The Game. I don’t think Mutembo is running away from the tribunal. But he would be a fool to believe that a tribunal populated by people who have clearly shown that they don’t like him and want to try him in the dark can be fair! He has every right to fight to have his trial in open court so that these people can feel some sense of shame. Where is Brebner Changala? Where is Newton Nguni?
      Foolish Zambians are so used to being stepped on by politicians that they think it is an anomaly when someone like Mutembo fights for his rights! Martin Luther King fought for his rights within the law! If you are a coward, stand aside and let the brave ones assert their rights. Viva Mutembo!

  11. Once again the all knowing Mutembo Nchito the fat desk lawyer getting directions and instructions from Clifford Chance….lol..kkkkkkkk….he has read a portion of the constitution and applied it…these are the same people who used the Post to compel others to face the law as they called it then….well it has come to haunt them once again and we cannot wait for them too to face the law….we want them to have a chat in the same manner they subjected those they felt where guilty…..this man is on record that he wrote a letter to the then Zanaco chief saying he had seen a nephew die because of want of drugs…my goodness how can a prosecutor go to court with dirty hands….at the time he wasn’t biased new the Tribunal is?

    • @Ellen. The new constitution says “Unless otherwise provided for…”. The question to ask therefore is: “Has the new constitution provided for the removal of a DPP”? If it has “provided” for it, then why are we still trying to do it as per old constitution?
      Looking at what you have written, I can see that you hate Mutembo. Be objective for once. If you want to find Mutembo guilty, do it within the law and in a transparent tribunal! Why do you want to do it in secret? The accused wants an open court & you insist on a secret trial with clearly biased judges! Shame on you!

  12. I can see that this document called consistitution will not stand the test of time because we were misled by the NGOs and the Grand Coalition who who had the hidden agenda about its content but potrayed it to be people driven. What we are discovering now were never spoken about, no wonder Mutembo is trying buy time over the amendments.
    Please arrest the culprit and jail him once and for all

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