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Alba Iulia
Monday, May 25, 2020

LGAZ opposed to proposed constitutional amendments

Headlines LGAZ opposed to proposed constitutional amendments

Local Government Association of Zambia Executive Director Maurice Mbolela says the Association is opposed to proposed constitutional amendments on local government.

Mr. Mbolela was reacting to Governance, Elections, Advocacy and Research Services Executive Director Macdonald Chipenzi’s sentiments during an interview with Phoenix FM on the purported silence by civic leaders on the National Dialogue Forum proposals that threaten their existence.

He said the Association is among the first stakeholders to provide its views on the need to safeguard constitutional provisions relating to local government in the Republican Constitution.

Mr. Mbolela cited Article 154 (2), which provides for a Mayor and Council Chairperson to be elected directly by the electorate in a district for a five year term of office adding that LGAZ has not departed from this position.

He said a popularly elected Mayor/ Council Chairperson points to the desire by the electorates in the district to have local authorities presided over by persons democratically elected as opposed to a few councillors like was the case previously.

Mr. Mbolela said the current Constitutional provision on the Electoral College for Mayor/Council Chairperson is based on several submissions made by the people to the Mvunga and Mun’gomba Constitutional Review Commissions which argued that having a few councillors electing the Mayor/ Councils Chairperson was not democratic as this disfranchised the majority.

This is also inconsistent with democratic values and principles of good governance espoused in the Constitution.

“The Association’s position on this matter is well documented, as members of the public may be aware, this is one of the reasons which led to Association President Mayor Christopher Kang’ombe’s appointment on the NDF being withdrawn for strongly stating the Association’s position on the matter.”

As regards Members of Parliament sitting on councils, Mr. Mbolela held that it is the Association’s position that Members of Parliament play an oversight role over councils and therefore, cannot oversee themselves.

He said the Association has resolved to defend progressive constitutional provisions and will support efforts aimed at amplifying the people’s voice especially on the type of local government they desired.

Mr. Mbolela further holds that there should be parity in governance, the lens used to determine the environment for one level of governance should be the same used on the other, otherwise, the country risks going through constitutional amendments from time to time if the peoples desires are not the basis for any constitutional amendments.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Not sure what to say on this one. Neither executive mayors nor those elected by councillors hv been effective. The solution to the malaise in local govt mayblie elsewhere. Why is no one talking about how we spend money in this country and who should be eligible to stand as a councillor? Why should someone who doesn’t know whay it is to pay property tax and income tax stand as a councillor? What chance do we stand to achieve anything wth people from nowhere?

    • Even delimitation exercise should be stopped bcos it will hv serious financial implications @ a time whn should be prioritising debt repayment. We’ve a debt crisis so we can’t continue with politics as usual.

  2. Upendi boycotted this existing constitution. Today they upendi vuvuzelaz are saying its a good document and should not be tampered with.

  3. PF HAS REALLY BROUGHT CONFUSION TO OUR BELOVED COUNTRY,TO THEM EVERY THEY HAVE TRIED IS SHAMEFUL e.g the purchase of fire tenders , the national dialogue forum, road tenders,toll gates oh the list is endless.
    How do you go to a dust bin and retrieve thrown documents ? its like you invite the British to come and colonize us again.

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