On page 9 of today’s edition of the Daily Nation (Saturday, 10 December, 2016), it is reported that YESTERDAY “Commerce, Trade and Industry Minister” Margret Mwanakatwe urged investors to take advantage of many investment opportunities that exist in various sectors of the economy and must put them into action for a mutual win-win situation……….
It is not what she said is we question but whether or not Ms Mwanakatwe still MP and therefore Minister?
As the Green Party, our understanding is that Lusaka Central Constituency Parliamentary Seat is vacant following nullification of the election by Judge Mwiinde Siavwapa. From press reports, our understanding is that the refusal by Judge Siavwapa to grant Ms Mwanakatwe a stay, means the High Court Judge’s decision to nullify the seat is in force, and therefore Ms Mwanakatwe is not a Member of Parliament.
Or may be, we missed the ruling, has Constitutional Court overturned Judge Siavwapa’s decisions to nullify the seat and his refusal to grant a stay? If the Constitutional Court overturned these High Court decisions, when did this happen?
If the High Court decisions have not been overturned, how come Ms Mwanakatwe is still acting in the capacity of minister?
Article 116 of the Constitution of Zambia provides that only an MP must serve as a minister.
Article 116 of the Constitution of Zambia provides that only an MP must serve as a minister. The Constitutional Court has already pronounced itself on this issue and to the best of our knowledge, the decision of the Constitutional Court is final. It is no longer in dispute that for one has to be a minister that person must be an MP.
To the best of our knowledge Ms Mwanakatwe is not an MP. She has merely appealed to the Constitutional Court and an appeal does not operate as a stay so how come she is posing as minister?
If she is not an MP, then is it a case state a case of impunity by the Executive? Is it sheer disrespect for the judiciary and judicial decisions by the Executive? Or indeed, is it sheer disregard of the constitution of Zambia by the Executive?
Is this what the President’s Aid Amos Chanda meant in the Sunday Interview two weeks ago?
We now earnestly appeal to the Chief Justice Madam Justice Mrs Irene Mambilima and Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini to immediately guide the Nation on this very important issue.