Prof Muna Ndulo
Prof Muna Ndulo

Professor Muna Ndulo has observed that there is a serious break in the rule of law in the country and has appealed to President Edgar Lungu to appoint people in public institutions on merit.

The US-based law professor, who has been in the country the last two weeks, said there was a strong disrespect for the rule of law in Zambia, especially from those who are supposed to uphold it.

Speaking in an interview Prof Ndulo said the situation made his heart bleed, especially that the country had for a long time been viewed as a strong democracy in the region.

“I must admit that I’m troubled by what’s happening in the country; my heart bleeds. For example, I do not really understand why we do not respect freedom of expression and freedom of assembly,” Prof Ndulo said

“These are fundamental rights that are enshrined, not only in our Constitution, but even in the covenants and international conventions that we have joined, including the African Charter. Based on this, people should be free to organise politically and otherwise. There’s no need to stop others from organising. So for me I must admit that I’m very concerned.”

He said every institution in the country was created by the Constitution and therefore subscribed to it.

Prof Ndulo called for constitutionalism in the country.

“The rule of law is fundamental because that means constitutionalism. But here I find it strange that today in Zambia we have people who argue that Parliament, for example, can do whatever it likes. The concept of the rule of law is about the supremacy of the Constitution; that’s what it’s about – that the Constitution is supreme to all institutions, including Parliament because Parliament is created by the Constitution, so is the Judiciary, so is the Presidency,” he said.

“Everybody is created by the Constitution. That means anything that doesn’t abide by the Constitution is invalid. Otherwise, what is the source of its legitimacy? It has no legitimacy. If your actions have no constitutional power, where are you getting that power from?”

Prof Ndulo said in a normal society there could be no development without good governance.

He said any country in the world that had developed did so because of respect for the rule of law.

“And I think we also need to realise that there’s a direct relationship between good governance and development. You cannot develop if your institutions of governance are not run properly. And that’s the evidence worldwide,” Prof Ndulo said. “Look at countries that are doing well in Africa. They are those that have no problems with human rights and good governance because good governance ensures that there’s adequate consultation in policies, in everything. Which means you minimise the chance of a wrong policy being passed because you encourage debate among citizens.”

And Prof Ndulo said in a country where deserving people were not appointed to public positions, service delivery collapses.

“And the other thing that really concerns me in this country is that when I compare to other countries such as Kenya and of course developed states, is that we don’t respect merit; we have to. People must be rewarded for their achievements and people must be selected on merit. For government institutions to run properly, they must be led by people who are competent,” said Prof Ndulo.

“This also requires clear processes of appointment to particular positions. This is critical, going forward. If we want to develop, we must respect merit in the civil service, universities and everywhere. If people who merit appreciation do not get it, they get discouraged and demotivated. In the end you have a serious collapse in public service delivery because the system is awarding wrong people.”

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55 COMMENTS

    • The prof is on point as regards to constitutionalism, no single mortal soul that is democratically elected by the poor masses can have supreme power over the constitution, none! If you want to turn Zambia into a one party dictatorship, kindly say so so that we the people submit likewise. Otherwise so long as Zambia remains a constitutional democracy, we the people have the sovereign power over your dear elected government to petition a bill in concourt. Its not your house where you can do anything you want and we turn the other cheek. Come out and explain why you will override the concourt petition, not muscling your way through bill 10. Let’s respect the constitution guys please. Ba Matibini abafyashi hear the people’s views twalomba. Meet them in the middle, negotiations should go…

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    • Dull cadres always refuse to listen to learned analysis from competent people. Instead they want to their fellow uneducated, corrupt and dishonest people like Ntewewe.
      That is why Zambia and Africa in general will never develop, except a few places like Rwanda, Mauritius, Ethiopia and a few more. These countries have competent leaders that appoint people based on merit and not on corruption and cadrerism.
      Its very tempting to say Africa is cursed. But, the truth is that its the Lungus, the FTJs, the RBs, the Doras, the ntewewes, the amos chandas, the sunday chandas that are a curse on Africa

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    • He has serious political ambitions. Let him take over from lazy and strategyless doube h.
      It is obvious, isn’t it. We have hand hypocrites like him before. Some hid in the media purporting to be fighting for the Zambian people. They have unashamedly joined politics and they are welcomed.

      The Ndulos of this world just yap like other professors residents in this Country that have nothing going.
      Yes some are doctors who are just doomsayers and dreamers like Ci sure sishuwa. Just saying.
      I thought that when someone is learned, the country ought to benefit but Dr. Situmbeko also failed, come on learned Colleagues, the Saasas show us what you got. Differentiate yourselves street docs like the CKinsultors of this world.

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    • Give Ndulo the credit for leaving his ivory tower at an ivy league institution and UN appointement to come and fight for you clueless PF cadres who don’t know what’s about to hit ya. I know a lot of educated cowards who can’t put their minds to a national cause. This is a very respected legal scholar, listen to him carefully. Epompelele.

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    • Why is the Speaker of Parliament allowed to use his discretion in deciding which Bill is Tabled in Parliament? Rather than using Personal Discretion the Speaker of Parliament should follow Parliamentary Procedures and should also make Bills Tabled in Parliament do not breach the Zambian Constitution which is our Supreme Law. Parliament, the Judiciary and the Presidency are subservient to the Constitution. Matibini should reverse his position and comply with the Law and avoid being in contempt of Concourt. If Matibini fails to comply with the Law, this issue will haunt him and PF when they are out of Office. Time will tell.

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  1. Professor politiking daily and telling half truths.

    Rwanda is currently the best run country in Africa.Yet,it is accused of abusing human rights on a daily basis.

    This professor must do his home and stop lazying around while politicking.
    Doest he know the west was developed based on abuse of the African?

    He comes all the way from the US to insult our intelligence.

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    • @ZP.Wow, this is a very uneducated view point. You will do yourself and the world a BIG favour by doing some studies in history rather than spewing out ignorant statements. Do a comparison of the west and africa way before the slave trade. Do some reading on the Romans, the ancient greeks, etc. Then you will stop comforting yourself with ill concieved and baseless theories designed as an excuse for incompetence ans corruption. Africa can blame no one but themslves for their failure. Is it the fault of the west that your chiefs sold their fellow africans to slave traders? Is the west to blame that you have corrupt and greedy leaders like Lungu? Is the west to blame that you have hungry minions/hyenas like Danny Pule, Ntewewe and the likes that daily sell the country for 30 pieces of silver

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  2. The only thing he said correctly is that people must be appointed on merit. Trueth be told appointments especially in government have been on whom you know. The rest of the issues are just his usual politicking. Why should insulting the president be freedom of expression? Keep your chibwantu mouth shut.

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    • I agree with you (him) on this point. The system should be appointing correct people in these offices.

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    • Prof Muna Ndulo is on point. The Constitution is Supreme and any breach should be dealt b4 Parliament proceeds with Bill 10. The Speaker’s treatment of the Lungu’s Impeachment Bill and Bill No.10 is contradictory. On the Impeachment Bill Matibini suspended Parliamentary Processes on the basis that the Bill had been Petitioned and is in Court. On Bill No.10 which is now in Concourt Matibini has used his personal discretion to Table the Bill in Parliament in spite of being in contempt of Concourt. In deciding to proceed with a Constitutional Bill in Parliament the Speaker should be guided by the Constitution and Parliamentary Procedures rather than his personal discretion. This is the more reason why LAZ has Petitioned Concourt to interpret this Amendment Bill No.10. Concourt Verdict on…

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  3. Under normal circumstances these comments would evoke respect, after all PF is not known for merit. But then this is Professor Muna “upnd cadre” Ndulo, who evokes very little trust if any. Never mind being US based, he is there to eke out a living just like any other Zambian in the diaspora. Such is the soiling of a once good professor turned party cadre who has lost all merit to be respected.

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    • No no no @ Junior jj. Not the Prof. Ndulo that I know. You comment from a standpoint of partisan morons. Ndulo has never eked a living. He is thriving. He has enough money and properties on three different continents my man. You may disagree with him but you can rest on this truth: The man is highly intelligent, very well off and yet humble to the core. Do your research please. Do

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  4. The most important qualification for a position in this PF era is you being a party cadre. Political allegiance 1st and merit 2nd.

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  5. I was eagerly waiting for him to cite specific examples of the broken down rule of law, but the good Prof fail short of mentioning any. One thing is correct though, appointments, imagine Sunday Chanda on the National Airports Board. On this one Prof is on point, lets hope the powers that be will give ear..

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  6. Problem in this country now is that when someone says something contrary to PF’s views, he is perceived to be UPND. Even when someone says something very sensible he/she perceived to be a UPND sympathizer. Let’s sober up and just accept constructive criticism

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    • But Ndulo is a hardcore upnd cadre!! That you can’t deny. Look at the 2016 voting pattern which still exists today and you will agree that the country is heavily polarised along political and tribal lines which are PF-the bemba/Eastern power bloc and upnd-tonga/lozi/NW support:THAT’S SOBER AND REALISTIC…

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  7. You don’t need masters to tell when things are not ok,even the Bible says let those with ears hear and do according to the law.the only way to show that our leaders respect Zambians is by following exactly the rules and laws of this nation and will be very unfortunate enough to have citizens actually support leaders not respecting this land and for your own information the freedom and peace Zambia has enjoyed for the past was as a result of our fathers and grandfathers who felt we were supposed to be free but here we are today busy destroying the peace we’ve for almost fifty five years come on this is only for few individuals’s self interest.it can only take well meaningful citizens to stand up and say no to the deceiption, unruly, dictatorship type of leadership

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  8. Amendment Bill No.10 is ECL and PF life line in 2021. This Bill is their Passport to rigging the 2021 Elections. PF know that due to Poor performance and Corruption over the years they have lost Political support among voters and can’t win the Election without Amending the Zambian Constitution. Power Retention is Priority No.1 for Lungu and PF becoz they have committed too many crimes and would be Jailed. This win can only be achieved by rigging 2021 Election or getting rid off HH altogether.

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    • Zambia is a fully functional democracy!! Upnd won by-elections in Sesheke, Katuba, NDC won in Roan-THE PEOPLE SPOKE!! If PF wanted to rig they could have scooped all these-even the Sesheke petition was ruled in upnd favour by the Courts. Truth is upnd under hh has just been rejected by Zambians-There’s no rigging!!!

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    • @Zambian Citizen

      Tell them.
      They have eyes yet they can’t see. Got freedom yet they can’t make good use of it. True that, indeed ‘you never miss the water till the well runs’.

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  9. This prof has been away for sometime and is out of touch with reality of things in Zambia. If people are left alone to gather as they wish they can cause anarchy, confusion and mess up things. Thats why they have to notify the police so that the police can provide security and protection to that gathering. The public order act has always worked during the previous governments and it will always work for the governments to come. Here in Zambia we dealing with ruthless cadres who are ready to kill for their political masters at a gathering and this is where the police come in to ensure that all people attending a gathering are protected. This is not America prof!!!

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    • Have you asked yourself what has changed in the last couple of year under PF for carders on either side to become so ruthless as to want to kill? They have been emboldened by corrupt politicians who compromised the police service, judiciary etc leading to ‘carderism’ being the order of the day. So if things have deteriorated in Zambia, it is because of the same PF government. Let the police service and judiciary do its job with interference, fear or favour, then there will be less need for enforcement of the public order act, as all politicians and carders will know they will be called to account under the law for their actions without any political interference. It is this collapse in governance that Prof is referring to!

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  10. Mune Muna, USA is worse.

    Black people in USA are killed by while police just because they are not white.

    Mexicans were butchered by gun totting a white supremacist just because they were foreigners.

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  11. Prof.Muna Ndulo is a known UPND (and just like many of them),his main aim is to push HH a fellow tonga into state house-finish!!!
    The only valid point in this article is “Govnt should be appointing civil servants on merit”.The rest is the usual trash from him!!For example,he said all countries which have developed observe good corporate governance and rule of law.This is “utopia” way of thinking because China,Russia,etc have developed without good corporate governance or proper rule of law.
    Muna Ndulo should know that this is not America but Africa.If we’ve limited Govnt controls,this country can become ungovernable!!We have people such as HH who only accept what suit them.E.g elections are only fair when he wins,the only competent institutions are those which say bad things about…

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    • When I read the headline I thought he was going to talk about how people can build houses in a road reserve and later found to have title deeds; how teachers can build boarding houses on school land and hence government land; how a government minister in charge of forest reserves can give herself a portion and say she followed law without telling others how they can also get a portion of the forest reserve while following the law; how others can get land on the banks of rivers when there is a policy against this. He has said nothing about America where a president appoints openly his daughter and son in law to high government positions and where the president openly conducts government business in his own hotels and goes to play golf at his own golf course at government expense. What…

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  12. Bitter Hakiende h with his inherited under 5 party where calculators are a substitute for basic reasoning has in his corner another of his vuvuzela cronies. His other crony despite being called ‘kafundisha’ has vowed to sort out President ECL when he meets him. We await that match up. Now turning to this gun for hire speaking on the podium a few days ago evidently didn’t register all his points so now he is speaking of some imagined rule of law break down and indirectly attacks the speakers position. We ask our good professor who is no different from PK chisala to worry about his own party and advice this calculator chap bitter Hakiende h to apply rule of law in his own party. Call for a convention, stop banning his cadres aka mps from tending to national events and allow them to…

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  13. He who come to equity must come with clean hands. The fact that the Professor has been siding with UPND on many governance issues, renders his voice on constitution frivolous. His voice will always be construed as a voice from UPND even when he means well. Professor should not side with any politicians when coming up with national issues. He has very credible points which can be isolated from his political stand, especially on appointments. There is a lot of infringements on corporate governance ethics in most appointments. Boards of directors which are formulated are skewed towards cadreism mentality. Professionalism is not adhered to. It has been thrown in an abyss of mediocrity.

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  14. As an English lawyer,I’m surprised Zambia appears to have a Non-Westminster definition of separation of powers!!. In most Common Law traditions,parliamentary sovereignty also called parliamentary supremacy is a concept which holds that the legislative body has ABSOLUTE sovereignty,and is supreme over all other institutions,including the executive or other bodies. Constutional supremacy is in relation to all other creatures of parliament.
    Baron Ndulo, have you been misquoted?

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  15. PF is changing things to stay longer in power. When they will be out, same changes will come to bite them. Ask MMD.

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  16. Constitutional Court in Lusaka established at great cost to taxpayers is testimony of the general desire and commitment of the country to promote constitutionalism. The issue of deficit in law and order needs to be contextualized rather generalized. Even in advanced democracies, there is abundant evidence of relative deficit in the rule of law. The critical point is that particular cases, events or incidences of distortions or failures in upholding the rule of law are discussed openly through free press by free thinkers. The free press and free thinkers are like fish. They need fresh water to survive. It would be helpful to pinpoint the distortion at issue. Be it 48 mysterious houses. Be it huge debt. Be it toy fire engines. Be it incompetent Government officers. Be it arrogant…

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  17. It would be helpful to pinpoint the distortion at issue. Be it 48 mysterious houses. Be it huge debt. Be it toy fire engines. Be it incompetent Government officers. Be it arrogant politicians.

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  18. Just to repeat, Prof Ndulo created himself as a UPND party cadre. Thus when he opens his mouth we see him as HH spokesman, now HH has serious baggage on his shoulders right from 2006 when he was born tribly, so how can any reasonable person listen to Ndulo Cadre?
    Not that PF are a good party, but clearly UPND is a very bad party. By the way what trib is his next running mate or vice President? Just curious, a bemba of course but not Muchekeka.

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  19. I have never heard of such a professor in Zambia and what is he doing in the diaspora and then keep talking trash about Zambia? Just reading the opening paragraph makes me want to delete the whole nonsensical write-up. If indeed he a professor in law and thinks he is relevant in society, why cant he raise those concerns in the US where we see US President Trump abusing and demeaning foreigners including this professor. Aint heard of him on CNN or other channels criticizing Trump and yet he wants to come and tell us half-baked data. We all know that these are UPND creatures that inherit what they haven’t worked for. You ran away from Zambia to go get light-skinned and get some accent, why are you bothering us who opted to remain and develop our country for our children? Sick!!!

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  20. This Muna Ndulo, Should be saying that when he came to Zambia he was arrested but he did not. Whe you say there is serious break down in the rule law in Zambia, without mentioning clearly what you mean then you are just making noise. Was there a civil service board that appointed people to the civil service. Muna says we do not respect merit, but does not say how we respect merit. Do we appoint artisans as medical doctors in Zambia? what is he talking about. Does he want the PF to appoint Hakainde to state house simply because Muna thinks that Hakainde is more qualified than Lungu what does he mean? This UPND cadre must start thinking about Zambia today and what structures should be in place to improve our systems, ranting just because the people we support are not in power is backward…

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  21. Prof. Ndulo, the economic refugee. You left the country decades ago to pursue a happier life, did your heart bleed for Zambia by then or for your pockets??? Of what benefit has your professorship been to Zambia? You are a professor of toilet business!!
    You say development is tied with democray and governance?? What hogwash!! You’ve already been challenged on the Rwanda case. Kagame is a vicious murderous dictator but has developed his country admirably.
    Please explain China, in a couple of years will be the biggest economy in the world with developed mega cities and infrastructure yet is one of the worst dictatorships known to man. it is about the party and government, patronage and clamping of opposite views by the Chinese government. Please explain this Mr. Prof. Of toilet and Manuel…

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  22. Here, sir, you may get one or two cheers from upnd cadres who are so impressed with you, am afraid the rest of us are not as foooooooooooolish as them.

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  23. Bo prof.of toilet business. The PF government, much as am not a fan of theirs , to their credit have made more progress on the constitution than any other previous government.
    Were we not divided on the issues of First-Past-The Post?? This system allowed a situation where a candidate would get only 28% of the total votes, be rejected by the majority 72% yet still manage to be our president like mwanawasa. Today, because of PF we have 50% plus one meaning that you have to be electric by the majority of voters to be president.
    Did we not kick out MMD for ruthlessly favorite first past the post.?? Are you still bleeding professor ???

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  24. Did we not cry for presidential running mate? Are you bleeding?
    Did we not cry for dual citizenship? Bleeding still. Go back to your president trump. We will keep our dammit.

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    • You will continue t o steal maize for food. Ndulo will always be heads over all of you. Your man Lungu was taught by Ndulo and Lungu was always a dull student.

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  25. Warlord: The man is highly intelligent, very well off and yet humble to the core. Do your research please.

    Research?? Prof Ndulo has been in the news, since 2016 especially. You dont know that since then he has been a renowned UPND cadre? Are you based in Dundumwezi? Or Somalia?

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  26. Political ambition? Is this what Thorn in the Flesh wrote? Ndulo has accomplished more than many men . Senior legal Advisor to the UN in Kosovo, Afghanistan, South Africa, author of over 14 books, an endowed professor at an ivy league top university. Board member of Human Rights Watch Africa, and more award that you can count. Zambia does not have enough money to pay this man. Most people would have wash their hands from Zambia by this time. Your petty PF cadres are all crooks .

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  27. People keen to leave and say nasty comments have a big problem and your problem is ignorance. If you can only take time to access the current situation in our country, you would absolutely agree with the dignified Prof Ndulo. He is a well renounced and respected scholar and his just stating how we can improve as a country, so please snap out of your ignorance for once at least. I share the same sentiments as the Prof, my heart also bleeds too to see our country’s lack of interest for the rule of law and respect for the Constitution and to make matters worse to see my fellow Zambians fail to differentiate a good act from a bad one e.g brainwashed and bashing what Prof is saying which is for the sole benefit of our country, this is just heartbreaking. There is nothing wrong with what he…

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