All Qualifications, including University Degrees must be Accompanied by a Grade 12 Certificate or its Equivalent-ECZ

ECZ press briefing in Lusaka
ECZ press briefing in Lusaka

The Electoral Commission of Zambia(ECZ) has said that all aspiring candidates will be required to have their grade twelve certificates or equivalent as validated by the Examinations Council of Zambia or the Zambia Qualifications Authority.

Speaking during a media briefing in Lusaka today, ECZ Chief Electoral Officer Patrick Nshindano said that qualifications from tertiary institutions such as trade certificates, diplomas, or university degrees are not equivalent to a grade twelve certificate and will not be separately accepted without a grade twelve certificate.

Mr. Nshindano said that aspiring candidates should ensure they obtain supporting letters from institutions validating their certificates which should be presented together with the nomination papers and verified certificates on the Nomination day.

Speaking at the same media event, Examinations Council of Zambia Director Michael Chilala clarified that a school certificate implies a pass in six subjects including English and that one of the six subjects must be a credit or better.

And ECZ has revised the election calendar to accommodate the provisions of the dissolution of Parliament set for May 14, 2021. Mr Nshindano said that the nominations should be held after the dissolution of parliament and that the nomination period has been revised in line with these requirements.

Mr. Nshindano said the payment of nomination fees will be done from 1st to 9th April 2021 and that candidates will be required to pay the nomination fees in advance to allow for the processing of supporters and make the exercise smooth.

Mr. Nshindano said the presidential nomination will be held from 17th to 20th May 2021 while National Assembly nominations will be held on 17th May 2021, while the mayor and council chairperson nominations will be held on 18th May 2021 while ward councilor nominations will be held on 19th May 2021.

Mr. Nshindano said the campaign period will start earlier than the nomination period and will run from 12th May to 11th August 2021.

Mr. Nshindano said the Commission has increased the number of wards from 1 624 to 1 853 and that the polling districts have been increased from 7 700 to 8 999 .

Mr. Nshindano said the review of constituency boundaries was concluded and the delimitation exercise report has been resolved, adding that the number of constituencies has however remained at 156 as provided for in the constitution.


  1. This is going to kick a lot riff raffs out of the race and send them to the political dustbin in the abyss where they belong. PF thought they could outsmart everybody with their maneuvers, now we await the presidential filling of documents and the see the drama that will ensue. We are tired of cadres masquerading as leaders devoid of any intellectual capacity and decorum. I bet Kaizer can’t comprehend any of this, kkkkk.

  2. Why should they produce their Grade 12 certificate if they have a University degree? Isn’t a degree proof that they completed Grade 12? Or in Zambia, you can go straight to University from kindergarden? Is Zambia not digitalized and all data can be traced?

  3. Copy & Paste:
    ‘Just say “all we need is a Grade 12 Certificate or its equivalent”. Why do you need a University degree for?’

  4. It’s wrong and speaks volumes about our education system. We have failed to run our education sector. Now every document has to be certified at great cost. Let’s accept this as a failure. Sir Roy Welensky was right to say that we were not ready to rule ourselves. I hear that at some schools, colleges and universities you don’t fail as long as you’re paying your fees on time!

  5. Ba @awe sure ,every university or professional body has what is called mature entry .In that case people do not need to have a grade 12 .So yes someone can even have a PHD and yet not have a grade 12 certificate .For instance you can study to be an accountant without grade 12 .You just write and pass a number of prescribed subjects at first attempt .With this you can go on and do masters and PHD.

  6. With this ECZ explanation its clear that the Lundazi MP without a Grade 12 qualification should be forthwith disqualified by Concourt becoz he is breaching the Republican Constitution as we speak. That is why the intergrity and competencies of Concourt Judges is being questioned. Concourt has a high propensity to making mistakes. Concourt’s record since inception in 2016 is appalling to say the least.

  7. I do not agree with the guidance on this. However, rules are rules and I urge everyone to comply. Remember that an equivalent to g12 certificate can also be tertiary qualification.

  8. We lack priorities,By Scott said we are not ready for this grade 12 thing but instead we leave to the future generation.See now the debate is still on.

  9. Nayo nayo manje. Ya za choka ma paper mu ma trunk manje. Matero University of Forgery will be very rich in April.. Ine ni limbe na G12, so I am not eligible to stand…lol. On a serious note, the interpretation and application of this G12 requirement by ECZ is questionable. So one is judged by a G12 certificate even if one’s abilities are far above a professor. Awe cha nsoni sana. KZ you have a point. Maybe we should consider introducing aptitude tests focusing on knowledge of Zambia, its constitution and development policies.

  10. Fingers crossed???
    Mr Stephen Kampyongo
    Educational Qualification:
    Certificate in Business Administration
    GCE O level???, Zimco Institute of Management – Higher Diploma IMIS


    Listening to Music and Making Friends

    Watching Soccer

  11. Together with the education requirements , we need more stringent enforcement of checks to bar convicts running for office……

    Lungu is a fraud convict and should be nowhere near the corridors of power

  12. No no no Ba Kaizer naimwe do not mislead people. Belengeni bwino bwino what the Chief Electoral Officer has said and I quote:

    “ECZ Chief Electoral Officer Patrick Nshindano said that qualifications from tertiary institutions such as trade certificates, diplomas, or university degrees are not equivalent to a grade twelve certificate and will not be separately accepted without a grade twelve certificate.”

    Meaning even if one has a tertiary certificate you still require to produce a certified grade 12 certificate from Examination Council of Zambia. So ba mudala ba GBM naba yama ba Freedom yakosako limbi.

    How have you read it mbuya. Hihihi

  13. Feeling very nervous for current PF MPs, so far, I have seen a dozen current MPs on parliament website whose description of their ”GCE” O levels leaves a lot of questions??? You would expect a description like 5 or 6 GCE O levels or GCE full school certificate. Even those just saying Grade 12 or Form V we don’t know how many subject passed ??? nkhani yabvuta kuno. ”School certificate implies a pass in six subjects including English and that one of the six subjects must be a credit or better” said ECZ
    PF please start vetting your potential candidates at nomination level before it is too late. There is nothing wrong with vetting now than having a candidate thrown out by ECZ

  14. Some Concourt Judges are PF Cadres. Why are they protecting the Lundazi MP when he hasn’t got Grade 12 minimum qualifications? Mr Lawrence Nyirenda’s MPship should be nullified forthwith. Some PF aligned Concourt Judges are protecting this MP so that he can be paid zk1.5 million Gratuity. This is illegal and unconstitutional. In anycase this Petition has taken more 4 yrs to determine. Why? Justice delayed is Justice denied. The way this Case was handled by Concourt says volumes about it’s impartiality on cases where PF is involved. Concourt cannot be trusted to do its work in an Objective and Professionally manner.

  15. A minimum of G12 certificate or it’s equivalent. “A minimum” is the key phrase here. Meaning .. any higher qualification meets the requirement even in the absence of a good or bad G12 certificate …that’s what the law provides and the concourt ruled accordingly in the Nkunika case. So what is ECZ talking about?

  16. The absence of a proper g12 certificate does not meet the requirement please take time to read the entire ConCourt judgement. I give an example of a true story where by a certain man had a sales certificate and after working for several years his employers wanted every sales person to upgrade to at least a bachelors degree. This particular sales person enrolled with a university to do a masters degree programe. This sales person passed and obtained the masters degree but alas when he presented the masters degree to the employer the sales person was asked for his first degree (bachelors) which was not there hence the masters degree was rejected. So its the same thing here. If you failed G12 but managed to obtain a masters degree you do not qualify. We have many people in Zambia who failed…

  17. Absolute power to shift goal posts at will or make the Constitution conform to ones whims! Now “A minimum” translation is having a Grade 12 certificate prove acquisition of tertiary and higher professional qualifications! Would many in religious circles then qualify should they choose to participate in national leadership roles? I believe this whole matter should still be revisited and maybe to introduce an aptitude test for all aspirants for fairness as for some intelligence is enhanced after exit from classroom!

  18. People are misinterpreting the matter. Grade 12 School certificate is not just 5 O level on credit or better. It can include passes and some credits. Unless the Constitution states that five O with credit. But if it is just school certificate two types apply. There is need for clear understanding for this matter before it is too late.
    Some people might perish for lack of knowledge. Read behind the certificate.

  19. I just want to boast here a little, if you search right here on lusaka times “analysis of the Nkunika..” You will be referred to an article in which I commented correctly what that judgment meant.

  20. That minister who bought the helicopter does not have a grade 12 certificate. Instead had a diploma.

    Surely he should be disqualified and must pay back his salary and other expenses for the time he has served as a minister.

    We shall see if lusambo/ kampyongo/kz gave grade 12 certificate.

    Thieves and crooks misleading. Even ex convicts should be barred from contesting any kind of public office that includes presidency and being in civil service

  21. No wonder we have dunderheads for politicians like Lusambo. A county where G12 certificate is more respected than your University degree. ECZ bunch of clowns

  22. It seems upnd cadres are very dull. They think this rule will fix me but what they don’t realise is that I am a senior civil servant and my role does not require me to hold a g12 certificate. What is even funny is that I hold a g12 certificate but their arrogance makes them think only upnd members are educated in Zambia. You claim to be educated but you have been losing elections since the days of cow bell milk.

  23. Really laughable ….Mr. Helicopter aka Joseph Malanji I hope this thief is restricted with his Form III papers …let him fly tourists in his helicopter promoting Zambian tourism let’s see how that fooool will pay for the bills, fuel and the helicopter pilot!

  24. Those grade twelve certificates do not make any one capable of being a good politician.
    I have seen great politicians who never had any academic certificates but they did wonders, try to see the people in business you will find that most of them don’t have grade twelve certificates, but they are successful business people.

  25. “Know your aspiring leader” now that we have some clarification it should be accompanied with transparency, thus the verified qualification resulting in confirming the nomination to participate in elections should be published for the aspirants to satisfy doubts that sceptics may raise.

  26. ECZ is 100%%right, people should have known, am 45 and since i started applying for jobs i had yet to come across any advert that openned minus demanding for a full gr 12 cert as one ofthe basic requirements so what more with national leadership?

  27. There is no clarification here from ECZ, just more confusion!
    For your information even the NKunika judgement someone analised just here on LT the other day, alot of you never got a thing from there.
    The constitution of Zambia says minimum qualification is a G12. This is not a job advertisement where qualifications are listed with G12 being the first qualification and others to follow, our constitution simply says minimum G12 thats it! There can be no minimum without a maximum. If you accept a minimum why should you refuse a maximum?? A tertiary qualification is superior to a G12 and can be the maximum qualification a candidate can have and be dully eligible.
    All of you calling people without G12 as riff ruffs, just exposes your ignorance and your young age! 90s & 2000s kids!

  28. ‘The Aligerians move in… there is no one there… We are in maningi trouble! They have scoooooored!’ Dennis Liwewe.
    ‘Jones Chilengi has missed a penalty! Since when did Chilengi take penalties!’ Dennis Liwewe
    ‘Shapovalenko throughs out the ball to Omakoulo who quickly crosses it to Viacheslav while Poliakov sprints up the middle!…
    Ucar! Fire!… It’s a goooooal!!’ Dennis Liwewe.


  30. It’s like asking Lionel Messi to prove he can handle a football. What nonsense. And KZ is proving a point: he says he is a senior civil servant but he doesn’t need a G12. I know why: he is PFake so the ministry was FORCED to give him a job, and nobody bothered asking him whether he can actually do something – so now he is sitting behind a desk commenting on so called UPND diasporans….. how sad can you get

  31. Have you seen that ECZ logo behind the speaker on the photo above? It states “Endosing your choice”. Can somebody please enlighten me and explain what ENDOSING means? Or would they maybe just maybe mean ENDORSING??? Ever heard of Google??? And this is the people who we have to trust with running an election???

  32. I don’t agree with this on principle. The idea of a Grade 12 certificate is to indicate minimum formal education required to articulate and understand national processes. If you have a degree, you are even over that minimum – it’s a higher qualification, why would you need to show a lower one? Illogical.

  33. Now this is what credible institutions do, guide the nation. This is very clear, having a degree is but just an added advantage. They have set the minimum requirement. If you have a degree without grade 12 then it is fraudulent and must be rejected. Matero degrees are not welcome at ECZ.

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