LAZ PRESS STATEMENT ON MISLEADING MEDIA REPORTS AGAINST THE ASSOCIATION
The Law Association of Zambia has noted misleading reports circulating in the press that LAZ has been ordered to pay K5, 000, 000.00 in costs for an interlocutory application before the Constitutional Court. LAZ would like to state the correct position on the matter.
On 1st March 2017, LAZ was successfully joined to the case of Dr Daniel Pule and others V the Attorney General in which the applicants are seeking a declaration that President Edgar Lungu is eligible to stand for election in 2021 on the basis that LAZ is an interested party by virtue of its statutory mandate to promote and protect Constitutionalism and the rule of law in Zambia as provided by section 4 of the Law Associatrion of Zambia Act Cap 31 of the Laws of Zambia.
LAZ made an application to a single judge of the Constitutional Court requesting permission to appeal the decision by the judge denying LAZ the opportunity to extend the time to file certain documents to the full court of the Constitutional Court.
The application was successful. However, in view of the delay occasioned by LAZ, the single judge awarded costs against LAZ which were not quantified as the parties have been ordered to agree on how much is payable in costs, failure to which, the amount of costs payable will be taxed (assessed) by the court.
LAZ has received a demand for costs in the sum of K5,000,000.00 from Dr Pule’s lawyers which LAZ has rejected in view of the excessiveness of the amount and has communicated the same to Dr Pule’s lawyers. Should the parties fail to agree on an appropriate amount for the costs, the matter will be referred to the court for taxation (assessment) of costs.
LAZ urges parties to this case to refrain from attempting to argue legal issues through the media as the case is still on-going. LAZ will further engage with the editors of the media houses that carried the misleading story to see how best the correct position can be reflected by them. LAZ has every confidence that due process will be followed by the Constitutional Court and that, whatever the outcome of the case, justice will prevail.
COUNCIL OF THE LAW ASSOCIATION OF ZAMBIA
Linda Kasonde, Eddie Mwitwa, Sashi Kateka, Andrew Musukwa (officers)