Supreme Court Judge Evans Hamaaundu has dismissed an application by UPND President Hakainde Hichilema and his Deputy Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba to have High Court Judge Chitabo recuse himself from the matter in which they are seeking the High Court to grant them the right to be heard in their 2016 Presidential election petition.
Sitting in Kabwe this morning,Judge Hamaaundu who passed the ruling together with Judges Kajimanga and Kaoma said the Supreme Court has no jurisdiction over the matter.
He has since advised the petitioners to lodge fresh appeals in the Court of Appeal to compel Judge Chitabo recuse himself from hearing the matter.
The Supreme Court ruling now means that Judge Chitabo will continue to hear the matter in which he had earlier refused to recuse himself following an application by the petitioners to have him do so.
The petitioners are now expected to continue appearing before the High Court for the hearing of the matter in which they have asked the court to rule that they retain the rights to be heard in the matter in which they have challenged the election of Edgar Chagwa Lungu and Inonge Mutukwa Wina as President and Vice President of the Republic of Zambia in the 2016 Presidential election.
The petitioners have an option to appeal against Judge Chitabo’s refusal to recuse himself in the Court of Appeal or have the matter heard before Judge Chitabo.