Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Why is the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) abrogating the law

Share

By Dr Fred M’membe President of Socialist Party Zambia

Why is the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) abrogating the law and changing the precedent it has set when it comes to Kabushi and Kwacha? On Monday, 17 October 2022, the Constitutional Court recognised that the order by the High Court to stay the elections in Kwacha and Kabushi Constituencies, remains valid.

Further, can the ECZ cite any law that empowers the Commission to proceed to conduct elections if a candidate who had resigned changes their mind after the Commission has even acknowledged receipt of their resignation? What the ECZ has done this time is lawless. The law requires the Commission to cancel the nominations and call for fresh ones only. There is no law that provides for a nominated candidate who has resigned to rescind their decision after resigning. After receiving the resignations of the two candidates, what the ECZ should have done is to call for fresh nominations from all eligible candidates. Anyone interested, including those who had resigned, would be free to file their nominations, if they are eligible to stand for the election.

It will be unconstitutional for the ECZ to conduct elections in Kabushi and Kwacha constituencies without calling for fresh nominations. Article 52 (6) of the Constitution of Zambia provides that “Where a candidate dies, resigns or becomes disqualified in accordance with Article 70, 100 or 153 or a court disqualifies a candidate for corruption or malpractice, after the close of nominations and before the election date, the Electoral Commission shall cancel the election and require the filing of fresh nominations by eligible candidates and elections shall be held within thirty days of the filing of the fresh nominations”.

This is the only provision that deals with the resignations of successfully nominated candidates. In both Kabushi and Kwacha, we had a candidate who resigned and the ECZ acknowledged receipt of their resignations. Once a candidate has resigned, the law requires the Commission to cancel the existing nominations, call for fresh nominations by eligible candidates and hold a new election within 30 days of the date of the new nominations. Indeed, this is what the ECZ has previously done. When a candidate belonging to the opposition UPP who had successfully filed nomination papers for the Kabwata by-election resigned, ECZ immediately cancelled the election and called for fresh nominations.

When Ms Charity Lumpa who had successfully filed nomination papers for Lusaka Central resigned as an independent candidate prior to the 12 August 2021 election, the ECZ cancelled the earlier nominations and called for fresh ones.

We want to remind the ECZ that this is not a game where one can do whatever they like without any regard to the laws of the land. The decisions of the ECZ should always be based on the or backed by law. The ECZ should stop this lawlessness and do the correct, legal thing.

32 COMMENTS

    • The electoral commission can’t enforce what it wants. It’s not the judiciary, the executive or legislature. It doesn’t rule anyone or anything in our republic. It is a tool not an organ of governance. Right now it should take a back seat and not propagate anything. Most of all don’t cause confusion in our republic. Here is where I will ask where are our intellectuals?

  1. The officers are afraid of losing their jobs and appointments. The president emphasized that by going out to campaign in spite of the fact that the elections had been stayed….Esau and Shindano are examples of what the president can do to you.

    6
    1
    • Deja Vu, it was well planned. Those ballot papers were printed immediately Lusambo and Malanji’s papers were rejected. Where were they printed and who witnessed? The UPND are so crude in their schemes that even a two year old child can see through them. Very shameful. But then Zambia isn’t their motherland alone, it’s for all of us. The UPND will leave power crying, all indications are there

      10
      1
  2. Aba nabo! The Courts have explained everything. Let’s move on. Lusambo and his friend were banking on the ConCourt ruling in their favor because the judges are PF. Well too bad.

    8
    10
  3. Just the same way you were abrogating the law by not paying your taxes when you were running your newspaper which you new found friends in Kabushi and Kwacha closed down

    3
    4
    • This is a very sTuPiD way of seeing things. People voted for Upnd for sanity not for confusion.
      So in your opinion what the PF were doing was okay except that you wished you were in their place.

  4. The Constitutional Court has clarified. 90 days within which to hold a by-election is constitutionally-stipulated and no court has power to change that. Case closed and the by-elections are going on now.

    1
    3
  5. “…..There is no law that provides for a nominated candidate who has resigned to rescind their decision after resigning…”

    Is there a law against it ?????

    Inanycase……….cde membe and the clique are fighting for criminal suspects to be in parliament…..

    Shows Desperation by the clique……..

    Is that all you can field ?? People facing criminal charges ???

    Looks like most of you in PF are criminals……..

    1
    2
  6. This is what happens when you have a bunch of people that claim to K ow it all and yet they know very little. We are killing this great nation by having mediocre I dividual running important institutions. There is no institutional memory in our country. It is shocking that when a Governing political party changes who ever comes into power fires all the senior civil servants such as Permant secretaries. How do you maintain institutional memory. It is very very sad, and we are busy blaming each other, we have no clue where the real problem is. And yet we wonder why we are still called third world. Our legislators are but just rude boys some have no idea of why they are in parliament. God help us.

  7. The matter was taken to court. Why didn’t the concourt rule that those nominations were null and void and order fresh ones to be conducted before the expiration of the 90 day stipulation period? The court only postponed the elections indefinitely without setting the new date within the 90 day period…..so why are some people blaming the ruling party?

    1
    3
  8. Dr Fred Mmember passed LAW?
    My goodness! I have never sy=tudied law but I can see very clearly how flowed his argument is. The problem with most Zambian lawyers is that they always fail to take a non-partisan side. The ECZ has not done anything wrong. McDonald Chipenzi is the only person who has correctly analysed the situation. If he is not a lawyer, he deserves an honorary doctrate from UNZA.

    1
    1
  9. #11.1 Spaka HH has quietly put his people in strategic positions. As for ministers he’s got no option but to appoint other tribes for obvious reasons.
    You always avoid to discuss the issue of harassment of Tongas appointed by Lungu at the hands of fellow Tongas. You forget that even Haamukale was considered an enemy for serving in the PF government.

    • “….As for ministers he’s got no option but to appoint other tribes for obvious reasons…..”

      How come PF did not appoint ministers from other tribes , but a few to act as cover ???

      PF is the most tribalistic party there ever was……….look at their presidential candidates ,99% from one region……….

      Lungu and PF practiced blatant tribalism , even endorsing tribal attacks on airwaves……..

      Those few tongas appointed by lungu were seen as endorsing the PF tribal attacks and deserved to be harassed………

  10. kkkkkk ninshi pa zed apaba bakamwenso ifikopo, ba bwidi,empty tins stop this circus please and ECZ,CONCOURT and all responsible organs do your job and very dispointing that even NGO’s are very afraid to speak,zoona umuntu muntu ba talala ba NGO.they used to yap yap in PF this time nabasanguka ba bwidi very shameful indeed.

  11. 21 days is 21 days….the AG has applied to be excused because he is attending a workshop until after by-elections . EM wants to petition the results but this is called forum shopping…one who does not pay taxes is worse than a thief because he has but is greedy…let us not forget boycotting elections happened and worked under welensky. When Old Mushumfwa used this same tactic? His party never recovered because it was for selfish reasons….so lets move on…lets grow and do other things…bonanza and chiloshi will be just fine…

    3
    1
  12. Dr. Mmembe its not ECZ but upnd who are abrogating the law. UPND did not want Bowman and Malanji on the ballot because they stood no chance against the duo. They were going to be humiliated in both constituencies.

  13. Although it’s a JOHN CENA kind’a doing things, this one i theft in broad daylight. Malanji and Lusambo’s stolen from them by the upnd administration. The rule of law spat apon with impunity. The courts and ECZ publicly embraced for all to see.
    Dictators don’t like democracy.
    Dictators loath the rule of law.
    Dictators want to interpret the law weirdly and unashamedly.
    You’re gonna dance ndendeule Zambians.
    Sleepless nights Lusambo and Malanji gave the weirdos.
    The drama just got started. Don’t cry, we warned you.

  14. Zambians now know that wolves have invaded the kraal to feast on the vulnerable sheep up to 2026. Western imperialists (with Guptas & Vedantas) are enjoying the punishments inflicted on Africans as they exploit Africa’s mineral resources to boost the economy of western powers. Some Officers in ECZ, Police, DEC, ACC & Judiciary have 3 years to administer lawlessness. Read Nkrumah’s book titled: “DARK DAYS IN GHANA”. Currently Zambians can only resort to tilling the land in SILENT and in TEARS so as to feed our children for the next 3 years. God will soon usher-in a leader who will restore sanity in this country.

Comments are closed.

Read more

Local News

Discover more from Lusaka Times-Zambia's Leading Online News Site - LusakaTimes.com

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading