University Of Zambia Historian Euston Chiputa says the Constitutional Court judgment on the eligibility of Bowman Lusambo and Joseph Malanji to recontest the Kabushi and Kwacha Parliamentary By-elections respectively should serve as a lesson to the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to stick to laws as opposed to wanting to impress the appointing authority.
This week, the Constitutional Court ruled that Both Mr Lusambo and Mr Malanji are eligible to stand in the forth-coming Parliamentary By-elections.
Commenting on this development, Dr Chiputa says the UPND should have avoided embarrassing itself by allowing the 2 former members of parliament to file their nominations for the forthcoming by-elections.
Dr Chiputa says the ruling party is doing well in improving people’s lives but notes that it is embarrassments such as losing an avoidable court case that can take away the gains made.
He is also of the view that it will be difficult for the UPND to win the two by-elections with Mr Lusambo and Mr Malanji as candidates for the former ruling party, something he says would bring further embarrassment.
Meanwhile, Green Party leader Peter Sinkamba has advised ECZ to announce, without any further reference or directions of the court, that the nominations of Mr Lusambo and Mr Malanji are valid and extend the campaign period for a reasonable time following yesterday’s court decision, to avoid the consequences of running an illegal election.
Meanwhile, The State through the Attorney General has applied to be joined to the case in which Hon. Bowman Lusambo and Joseph Malanji have sued the Electoral Commission of Zambia.
In this case, the duo petitioned the ECZ and challenged its decision in which they were barred to file their nominations on the purported reason that they were not disqualified under Articles 72 (2) and 72(4).
Judges D.M. Bowman and Judge C. Lombe Phiri who are hearing the matter have adjourned to make a ruling on the application by the State.