Former Roan Member of Parliament Chishimba Kambwili’s application for judicial review in the Lusaka High Court over the declaration of the Roan parliamentary seat vacant by Speaker of the National Assembly has been thrown out.
The Roan seat was declared vacant on February 27, 2019 after the Speaker ruled that Mr. Kambwili could not be in Parliament as the Patriotic Front lawmaker whilst also heading another political party.
The Lusaka High Court has dismissed Mr. Kambwili’s application for judicial review for want of jurisdiction.
In dismissing the case, the High Court advised that the applicant could not shift recourse of a matter to the High Court with a matter that fell squarely in the exclusive jurisdiction of the Constitutional Court.
The court has noted that the characteristics of a dispute determines the forum to which an applicant or claimant should have recourse to as a matter that is purely within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Constitutional Court cannot be launched via judicial review under the public law.
The Court found it irregular that Mr. Kambwili abandoned the matter in the Constitutional Court only to re-launch before the High Court which they found inconceivable.
“In view of the foregoing, I come to the conclusion that the application for leave should be denied for want of jurisdiction and I so order, the application is therefore dismissed,” stated the court.
The former Roan lawmaker sued the Attorney General and Electoral Commission of Zambia and wanted the court to declare that Dr. Matibini’s decision did not conform with the provision of Article 72.
Mr. Kambwili was challenging Dr. Matibini’s decision to declare the Roan seat vacant.
He wanted the court to further prohibit ECZ accepting the nomination papers from the aspiring candidates.
The Roan seat was declared vacant on February 27th after a ruling on a point of order raised by Malambo Member of Parliament Makebi Zulu who wondered whether Kambwili was in order to hold on to the seat on the PF ticket whilst also publicly confessing that he was the leader of the opposition National Democratic Congress.
The Electoral Commission of Zambia has declared April 11th as the date for the by-election for the Roan seat.