Monday, April 15, 2024

President Lungu in the ConCourt for “breaching the Constitution” after assenting to Correctional Service Bill


Chapter One Foundation Limited has petitioned President Edgar Lungu for assenting to the Correctional Service Bill no.35 of 2021 when his parliamentary mandate expired following the dissolution of Parliament.

The Bill seeks to give well behaved inmates a fortnight leave to visit their families. Prisoners will also be released on a special license apart from being pardoned.

Chapter One Foundation wants a conservatory order staying the operation of the Zambia Correctional Service Act no.35 of 2021 and restoring the Prisons Act Chapter 97 of the Zambian laws pending determination of the petition.

It wants a declaration that to the extent that the Zambia Correctional Service Bill no.35 of 2021 was assented to by the President after the dissolution of Parliament on May 13, 2021, the Zambia Correctional Service Act no.37 of 2021 was not law enacted by Parliament of Zambia therefore it is null and void.

The Foundation is further seeking an order of certiorari that the Zambia Correctional Service Act no.37 of 2021 be quashed.

In its petition, Chapter One Foundation said that following the dissolution Parliament on May 13, 2021, President Lungu ceased to be part of Parliament.

It said after the dissolution of Parliament until the period when the President-elect assumes office of President in accordance with Article 104 of the constitution, the Head of State can only continue to perform the executive functions of the Republic.

The NGO stated that the constitution vests the legislative authority of the Republic to be exercised by Parliament.

It said according to Article 92 of the constitution, the executive functions of the President, without limiting other provisions of the constitution, are: Appoint ambassadors, high commissioners, plenipotentiaries, diplomatic representatives, consuls and heads of international organisations, receive and accredit foreign ambassadors, high commissioners, plenipotentiaries diplomatic representatives and consuls, negotiate and sign international agreements and treaties and subject to the approval of the National Assembly, ratify or accede to international agreements and treaties.

COF said other duties are to establish, merge and dissolve government ministries, subject to the approval of the National Assembly, appoint people as required by the constitution or any law to be appointed by the President, initiate Bills for submission to and consideration by the National Assembly, among others.

The NGO stated that on April 14, 2021, the Zambia Correctional Service Bill no.35 of 2021 was published and the date when the said Bill was passed by the National Assembly is currently unknown.

“On May 19, 2021, six days after the dissolution of Parliament, the respondent ceased to be part of Parliament and purported to assent to the Zambia Correctional Service Bill no.35 of 2021,” COF said.

“After the dissolution of Parliament on May 13, 2021, President Lungu’s legislative authority conferred by Article 63(1) of the constitution to assent to Bills passed by the National Assembly expired.”

It argued that President Lungu breached Articles 81(8) and 92(2) of the constitution on May 19, 2021 when he purported to assent to the Zambia Correctional Service Bill no.35 of 2021.


  1. Llungu is a danger to political space in Zambia. He doesn’t seem to know what he’s doing. That man was right. This man is Jonathan Mtaware. Can a Lawyer abrogate the Constitution those many times?

  2. Well, if Parliament never passed this bill before its dissolution then CFO is right to question its legality. But if the bill was passed before Parliament was dissolved and it was just sitting on his desk waiting for his signature, then there is no problem here. And the answer shouldn’t be that hard to clarify the issues raised here by the CFO folks. The only other way this bill would stand the Court’s scrutiny is if, in Zambia, an Executive Order can also be called a Bill. I believe during this period the only thing the Executive (President) can do is sign/issue Executive Orders and not pass Bills. Bill passing is solely a prerogative of the Legislature (Parliament.)

  3. Edgar Lungu is a lawless lawyer.Thanks to Chapter One Foundation for challenging this breach of the constitution.

  4. ECL is a lawyer but his propensity to breaking laws is very high. The man has no respect for Constitutionalism, Rule of Law, Good Governance and Human Rights. ECL is a Chipante pante Visionless Leader. His talents are more to do with thuggery and violence. ECL is the Godfather of: “Ubomba Mwibala Alya ifya Mwibala Alya ” Team. Another 5years under this violent, incompetent and clueless Lungu will be a disaster for Zambians. The notorious ZPS, PF Cadres, Militias and Vigilantes will take away all our rights. Zambia will become a fully fledged One Party State. Zambians have one last chance to liberate themselves from Lungu’s Dictatorship. On August 12 Zambians must vote out this Dictator and usher into Power Sober,Intelligent and Principled HH and UPND Alliance. HH aka Bally will…

  5. Where was the attorney general when all this was happening? For me this puts the attorney general in the spot light. The man has let the presidency down to embarrassing levels. I pray that the next attorney general will be up to the task. The current attorney general will go down as the worst based on numerous constitutional breaches by the presidency we have witnessed in the past 5 years.

  6. Zambia has become a lawless country, thanks to the worst president the country has ever had, a man who is actually a lawyer for goodness sake! It won’t be long and Zambia will change into Zambibwe.


  8. Why is chapter one failing to understand simple legal issues? The national assembly passed the bill all it was waiting for assettin. Are these genuine lawyyers sure ?

  9. It looks like Chapter One and Legal Resource Foundation coupled with Dr. Sishuwa are the only Zambian citizens who are in this fight? Why same people? Even when it it is malice, a cite democracy.

  10. The president can sign or refuse to sign a Bill. He can even delay signing for a while depending on other circumstances.
    Should all Bills be signed before Parliament is dissolved? Does it really matter if signing is delayed? This is total mischief on some of our legal minds.

  11. worst president ever to walk the face of the earth, 0 IQ, useless ch1sushi…. nothing to show but dirty yellow stinking teeth

  12. Hahaha ati chapter 1. Come election time upnd would have had 100 chapters. You think we don’t know who is funding these tribal useless organisations.

  13. Yesterday, I happened to come across Anthony bwalya. I couldn’t believe how more uglier he is in person. Mubi ulya. My kids were with me and they started crying when they saw him. How can you be this ugly inside and out

  14. How about that breach where he did not handover power to the speaker after the 2016 election petition, which lawyer is taking that up for us Zambians

  15. That’s the trouble when you’re so blinded and just look at things from a narrow perspective. PF has been running a transformational agenda and one of the areas is to transform prisons that condemn prisoners into hard core crimals into crorrectional service were basic rights and decency is provided . Its necessary to appreciate that these people are human too and need to enjoy certain rights despite the fact that they are incarcerated. Imagine someone going for 5-10 years without conjugal right.That’s why even when they are pardoned after many years, they turn to criminal activities because the prisons turned them into beasts. This bill aims at allowing the correctional service through the parole board to monitor behaviour and gradual integration into society which is more…

  16. A few years ago we did say that the ‘headless’ leader of COF was a political activist disguised as laz president…at the time we were attacked saying we were anti-feminist….because we were talking about the first female this and that….well fast forward…a law firm disguised as an NGO was founded…Shishuwa once questioned and took apart this law firm to the point that they even threatened to sue…he asked them to proceed they retreated….Please look at when the bill was tabled….the rest will be story in kachasu.

  17. PF administration as incumbents, there’s no fairness in your bones.

    Chapter One Foundation or any one else need to address, regarding presidential campaign, the Secret Service protecting of Major presidential and vice presidential candidates and their spouses.


  19. Yambayamba @ 2, in Zambia we call them statutory instruments and not executive orders. All the same, you cannot call a stututory instrument an act of parliament. An act of parliament has to be passed by parliament itself. I don’t believe that this amendment to the Prison Act was not passed by parliament although I don’t remember any news reports it was being debated. But then it’s possible to miss a news item. I hope COF has its facts right.

  20. Machayi @ 11, I agree. I hope COF did the basics. As for Linda Kasonde being political shile serving as Law Association of Zambia president, that’s irrelevant. She never pursued the interests of any political party while holding that position. She can be impulsive occasionally but she will out of it as she mellows with age.

  21. President Lungu is also a member of parliament. He signs bills passed by parliament into law in his capacity as a member of parliament with special power to do that. The question that arises is whether the president can be a member of a dissolved parliament.

  22. Chapter One Foundation seeks to throw mud in ECL’s face and dent his character at all cost. They know his image in public eye is marred and want punch more holes in his reign. This also subtracts votes from the PF as it creates doubts in those who could have thought of voting for him. He’s one president who will go down in annals of history to have fought relent legal battles from the time he was voted into office in 2016. these guys in my opinion have achieved their objective together with their pay masters.

  23. Correctional facilities are more transformational, interactive, progressive and reformative. That’s why death by hanging of late hasn’t been entertained.
    First you condemned the law, now you question the formulation and bureaucracy behind the law so a lawyer (Hon. Sangwa) can look important at election time.

  24. what kind of law is this,you make rules of laws but you fillen to take in action what a weeked.
    that’s why zambia is going backwards

    Quoted by Marcus Messiah Curvary

    icalo icabula ifunde te calo,
    icili pali ewe mailo
    cikaba pali iwe
    mukebukisha ninshi fwalilubana
    Muka pingula nani

    Quoted by
    Marcus Messiah Curvary

  25. These court petitions are just meant the courts to appear bad maybe with the view that once HH lose the elections, which I believe he is losing,then when elections out come is partitioned and petitioners lose, which they will, then blame everything on the court. Why I say so, this is just civics, once parliament has passed the bill,it remains with the president and there is no where in the constitution where it says the president should only sign Bill’s president to him ince once parliament is running.

  26. In Constitutionalism generally, the principle is that ‘When Parliament is dissolved, all unfinished parliamentary business falls – including any bills that have not received assent’. There maybe a point to this case. Parliament is the President AND National Assembly. The Zambian Constitution provides that when a Bill is presented to be assented to, the President may refer it back to the National Assembly if he thinks something needs to be changed or amended before it can be signed. In other words, how would that happen when there has been a dissolution? The whole process has to happen within the sitting of that Parliament. There will be a new Parliament after August as this was a dissolution rather than a prorogation when it’s just the end of a session – to be resumed later. Thus,…

  27. …. Bills cannot be carried over to the new Parliament. That they must be assented to before dissolution, then makes sense.

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