High Court Judge Justice Mercy Makubalo has dismissed the application brought by the Attorney General to set aside for irregularity the petition filed by the Green Party President Peter Sinkamba in Kitwe High Court.
In June, Mr Sinkamba filed a petition in Kitwe High Court seeking a Court Order to declare as unconstitutional Government’s failure, refusal and neglect, to pay him US$323,560.00, at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of the Attorney General.
Mr Sinkamba argued that failure by Government to pay him has unduly inflicted mental torture, including degrading and like treatment, contrary to Article 15 of the Constitution.
He further argued that failure, refusal and neglect by Government to pay what it owes him, has unduly stifled his self-reliance initiatives, investment plans, as well as his employment and wealth creation efforts, contrary to Article 10(1) of the Constitution.
Furthermore, he argued that failure, refusal and neglect by Government to pay what it owes him, has unduly spoilt his economic empowerment opportunities, and regressed his capability to contribute to sustainable economic growth, contrary to Article 10(2) of the Constitution.
In delivering the ruling on the State’s application, Justice Makubalo stated: “It must be pointed out that the Constitution of Zambia is the Supreme law of the land which delegates its authority to various statutes of Zambia and those statutes by the delegated authority regulates the operations of the bodies or boards and/or those who would be called to abide by it.
“Having looked at Order VI rule 1 of the Chapter 27, I am of the view that the cited Articles in this action, which are purportedly to have been infringed, could only be brought by way of a petition. As to their being infringed could only be tried on the merits at trial.
“I am of the view that the action has been properly brought before the Court and I dismiss the Respondent’s application. I order that costs be in the cause.”
The payment is in respect of work Mr Sinkamba did as a Consultant to Government to establish and operationalize the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) for the Ministry of Mines in which more than US$20 million has so far been deposited by mining companies.
Mr Sinkamba wants the Court to order Government to pay his fees forthwith, with interest at the ruling Bank rate.
He also wants the Court to award him damages and costs and any such other relief that the Court may deem fit.
He is represented by Clement Tafeni of Messrs Suba, Tafeni & Associates. The Attorney General is represented by Assistant Senior State Advocates Ms Kalimamukwento and Mrs Mundia.