President Edgar Lungu
President Edgar Lungu

A PANEL of seven judges of the Constitutional Court will preside over the main matter in which four leaders of the opposition have asked the court to determine whether or not President, Edgar Lungu is eligible to contest the 2021 Presidential elections.

The seven are; President of the constitutional court, Ms justice Hildah Chibomba, Ms justice Anna Sitali, Ms justice Mungeni Mulenga, Mr justice Enock Mulembe, Professor Margaret Munalula, Mr justice Palan Mulonda and Mr justice Martin Museluke.

When the matter came up for hearing of the main case yesterday, the seven Judges headed by Ms Justice Chibomba took their positions in readiness to hear the matter.
The number of judges who preside over a case is decided administratively done as parties or litigants do not have the power to decide.

Last week, the Constitutional Court dismissed Christian Democratic Party leader, Dan Pule and three others’ application to have the number of judges increased from five to seven saying there was no need for the application.

Dr Pule and others made the application when the court was still handling preliminary issues relating to the case and had not yet gone into the substantive issues of the matter.

However, when the matter came up for hearing of the main petition yesterday, a full bench of seven judges emerged to preside over the case.

The case could, however, not take off because United Party for National Development (UPND) through its lawyers Keith Mweemba and Gilbert Phiri had just filed skeleton arguments in support of the affidavit in opposition after the court granted them leave to file out of time.

Dr Pule’s lawyers asked for an adjournment to enable them study the arguments together with those filed by the Law Association of Zambia on April 19, this year.

In their skeleton of arguments, Stephen Katuka (on behalf of UPND) argued that Mr Lungu was not eligible to seek Presidential office as a candidate in the 2021 Presidential elections as he had already twice held the office of Presidency.

Mr Katuka contended that although a term of office is five years, the argument that Mr Lungu had not previously held office for the full period of five years, as argued by Dr Pule and others, was not ground for the proposition that he would not have twice held office in 2021.

And the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) in its arguments urged the court to dismiss Dr Pule and others’ motion on the grounds that was improperly before the court.

Lawyer representing LAZ, John Sangwa said that the matter should be dismissed because the applicants had no standing in the matter in that they had not demonstrated how they had been personally affected by or interest in Article 106 (3), which limits the number of times one holds the office of President to two terms.

Mr Sangwa said the issue of President Lungu’s eligibility was not ripe for adjudication in that the procedure outlined in Article 52 of the Constitution had not been actuated and Mr Lungu himself had not expressed interest to contest the said election in the manner, place and time stipulated by the Article.

Mr Sangwa argued that the determination of the eligibility of Mr Lungu to contest the election of 2021 was premature in that there was no evidence that he would indeed hold office until August 2021.

The matter was adjourned to May 7, 2018.

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42 COMMENTS

  1. “The case could, however, not take off because United Party for National Development (UPND) through its lawyers Keith Mweemba and Gilbert Phiri had just filed skeleton arguments in support of the affidavit in opposition after the court granted them leave to file out of time.”

    Under 5

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    • Lungu please learn from Ian Khama Botswana…why can’t you do the same. You have stolen enough please now go away and give chance to others. You are not even Zambian.utumatobo! Zwaaaaa

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    • Just how did we end up with this fraud as a President. If Lungu stands in 2021 that will be the end of PF. This Yao guy will be embarrassed and after he loses he is going straight to jail..corruption,fraud

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    • No wonder Kaponya (HH) and his team were too incompetent to file a successful presidential petition.

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    • @Anonymous
      Khama served a full 10 years the only difference being that his ascendency did not tie in with the election cycle as they follow automatic succession this end – and they do not have “presidential” elections. You are comparing apples with nshima.

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    • I think this case should be allowed to continue until the rulling is made. this is not because of President Lungu but it is because of generations to come! aticle 106, 6 states “the President-elect shall serve
      for the unexpired term of office and be deemed, for the purposes of clause (3)—(a) to have served a full term as President if, at the date on which the President assumed office, at least three years remain before the date of the next general election; or (b) not to have served a term of office as President if, at the date on which the President assumed office, less than three years remain before the date of the next general election.”

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    • the above article should be examined. if President Lungu does not want to contest it is fine but we have to know if he is illegible. so that if such things happens in future we will know what to do.

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    • @1.4 ba folosho
      Thanks for the correction i had no idea in Botswana its automatic succession. But how does someone become eligible for succession..please explain thanks

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    • Last week, I told you it’s DOWNHILL for Lungu or Mutaware or whatever his real name is.

      It’s DOWNHILL till he goes to JAIL where he belongs.

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    • @1.7 Anonymous: The Botswana constitution has it that the Vice President automatically takes over on the Presidents expiry of his 2 terms . This quirk or lack of synchrony between the Presidential Term and the Election cycle arose following QKJ Masire’s premature resignation from the presidency a year before the general elections and has continued with the Mogae and Khama presidencies

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    • Ba Folosho: That is what hatred does to human kind. They compare different countries processes that are not enshrined in our constitution. Next they will say King Mswati changed the name of Swaziland why cant we also change the name of Zambia to Zambezi. Worse they do not even have a clue on how these other countries run but just make noise. We have people who have been party presidents for donkey years and no one dares to challenge them. They loose elections and continue blaming everyone else apart from their own leader who can never win an election to date.

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  2. “Mr Katuka contended that although a term of office is five years, the argument that Mr Lungu had not previously held office for the full period of five years, as argued by Dr Pule and others, was not ground for the proposition that he would not have twice held office in 2021.”

    This prostitute Pule has no shame …we know who his paymaster is its probably Kaizer…you honestly think Pule would dip in his pocket and hire lawyers, the man would rather host overnight prayers and feast on choir girls, widows and other mens wives.

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    • I don’t like all those arguments.
      No judge is interested in Mulongoti and Siwale’s story?
      What if indeed the man is Jonathan? What’s third term for.

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  3. The constitutional court of Zambia is not fit for purpose. How on earth can it justify the length of time(2yrs +) it has taken just to deliberate on this one case. In the meantime they are busy claiming huge allowances. What a miscarriage of justice

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    • Meanwhile Lazy Lungu has been appointing all these incompetent PF judges to beef up that court and place spies all over the Concourt.

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    • Jay Jay at 3.1, are you aware that one of these cConcourt female judges is a wife to a strong UPND supporter who is also a lawyer, McD. That she is PF cadre, I doubt.

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  4. This academic case going no where. Lungu will stand & will be president till 2027. The others should continue trying until they clock 10 loses! Forward with losing!!!!

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    • HH should now be working on upping his losses for a GUINESS book of records achievement. Don’t look at me like that, it’s also an achievement.

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  5. Upndeez, an angel has just delivered a message from heaven that you will die off in the next weeks.

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  6. okay, the way I see it Lungu should retire now and enjoy himself post ruling because things may turn out ugly for Zambia should he cling to power. What baffles me is the fact that he lends a deaf ear to how he has lost the president’s esteem in the nation due to corruption allegations on one hand and hunger and poverty of the masses on the other and he is not even bothered. Don’t even the shushus brief him on this?

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  7. The issue here is why ambush litigants without due notice that the full bench is now in place? They cannot just sprang from nowhere and say we are now ready to hear the main case. Both sides were not ready and that is why they need to be given time to present a proper case. Just because they know that only skeletons of arguments were before court they want to proceed and throw out the case? What has gone wrong with our judiciary? They are self serving and trying to protect illegality at all costs. Eat while you can but the time of reckoning is coming. Nonsense.

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  8. can someone release official results for the just ended local gvt by-elections? Word on the street is that all of them have been petitioned already

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  9. Edgar or Jonathan!The guy will cry like RB should he manipulate the constitution and attempt to stand in 2021

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  10. Use simple mathematics to determine this case. go down to number of days in a presidential term period. why do you want to short change kateka.

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  11. Why has this case dragged on for so long? I thought that it was a straight forward case, going by the constitution. Is it a case of more seating allowances for the Judges / or more money into lawyers’ pockets? God bless Zambia!

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  12. ECL is a lawyer and a brilliant one at that. Even if the ruling is against him, he will bring it up in court as a private citizen and win and the State will compensate him big time. That’s when losers will notice the genius in this man. As of now they are blind. He will make money out of your stupid noise.

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  13. Fredrick Chiluba made a confession that “power is sweet” and made a futile attempt to fudge the constitution to go for the third term. Lungu can actually go the whole hog to ensure he stands in 2021 when his administrations sad legacy is the horrible stain and offensive stench of massive corruption. Where is the mans heart and conscience?????

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  14. Illegibility of Lungu are alot and the 7 Judges can not hundle the case alone. We need judges who will be free and fare for to reduce embarrassments of bias courts of law.

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  15. His Excellence Edgar C Lungu the only legitimate President of the Republic of Zambia’s presidency has been very interesting so far. Like any human being, he is not perfect but when one looks at all the baseless accusations made by the so called opposition one is inclined to deduce that the man is doing something right somewhere and the opposition know that given another full term in office he will render them irrelevant that is why they trouble their minds today in 2018 with 2021 elections let the man lead in peace. Why are all these learned lawyers and judges even entertaining such issues in the first place?

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  16. Tekanyeni, there is one Judge remaining. They are supposed to be eight. His Lordship the Most educated Judge in Constitutionalism in Zambia one Mike Mulongoti is missing on the list so that he can tell us more about parentage of all sambians. Rubbish!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  17. Very dull petitioners! When a president dies and someone else takes the reign of power from the party this is not a term for the person finishing that term. Someone has seen the writing on the wall! They criticise the president yet they know the animo farm candidate stands no chance! Someone will deveolp gray hair on the bench.

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  18. HH is a tribal fraud and with the lowest IQ of all people who have stood as presidential candidates in Zambia’s history. Even Chama Chakomboka was smarter that this tribal representative.

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  19. Anonimas tribo animo! As dull as HH and all his supporters! The level of ignorance in HH’s supporters is frighteningly high!

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