Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Judicial Complaints Commission dismisses Emmanuel Mwamba’s complaint against the Chief Justice

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The Judicial Complaints Commission has dismissed a complaint against Chief Justice Mumba Malila SC stating that the complainant had no locus standi.

In its sitting to consider a complaint brought to the JCC by Amb. Emmanuel Mwamba, the Commission stated that in terms of Section 27(1) of the Judicial Code of Conduct Act No. 13 of 1990, the Commission found that Amb. Mwamba had no locus standi in the matter.

Locus Standi is defined as the right or capacity to bring an action or to appear in a court or judicial body.

On 16th January 2023, Amb. Mwamba filed the Complaint against the Chief Justice for alleged judicial misconduct.

Amb. Mwamba who is also a Patriotic Front Presidential Candidate filed a complaint against the Chief Justice of Zambia, Hon. Mumba Malila, for alleged judicial misconduct.

Amb. Mwamba accused Hon. Malila and Supreme Court Justice, Jones Chinyama of misconduct for their handling of an appeal case in which they should have clearly recused themselves.

According to Mwamba, the Constitution of Zambia in Article 118, provides that judicial authority must be exercised in a fair and accountable manner.

“The judicial system is supposed to be the bedrock of our democracy. We cannot have a system where judges are not held accountable for their actions. The Chief Justice, Hon. Mumba Malila and Hon. Jones Chinyama are supposed to be upholding the law, but instead they are showing a lack of integrity,” Mwamba said.

The appeal case in question, involved Stella Mumba Chibanda and 3 Others Vs The People, appeal nos. 418, 419, 420, 421 of 2013, involved facts and alleged crimes committed during the disbursement of funds from a security account held in ZNCB London Branch, run by the Zambia Security Intelligence Services (ZSIS) called the ZAMTROP.

Amb. Mwamba stated that Hon. Jones Chinyama, as a Magistrate in the subsidiary court, convicted and jailed Faustin Kabwe and Aaron Chungu in 2009 for theft and being in possession of money believed to have been stolen or unlawfully obtained from the ZAMTROP account.

However, on appeal to the High Court, both men were acquitted by a panel of judges comprising Judge Betty Mungomba, Judge Mwila Chitabo and Judge Annessie Bobo-Banda.

Furthermore, Mwamba noted that Hon. Malila, as Attorney General, had previously sued former President Frederick Chiluba, Stella Mumba Chibanda, Faustin Kabwe, and Aaron Chungu in the London High Court over payments made in the ZAMTROP account.

He had also attempted to register the London Judgment in the Lusaka High Court.

Amb. Mwamba argued that these previous actions by the two judges should have led them to recuse themselves from the case, as they were likely to be prejudiced and biased against the appellants, thereby robbing them of the right to innocence and a fair hearing.

“I presented detailed evidence to the Commission of the unethical and judicial misconduct of the Chief Justice and Justice Chinyama. This action by the JCC to fail to hear such as a serious matter against the duo on the flimsy reason that I didn’t hold locus standi in the matter, robs the Judiciary an opportunity to inspire integrity, public faith and help restore credibility,” Mwamba said.

39 COMMENTS

  1. Emmanuel Mwamba thinks he knows as much law as the lawyers and judges. The accused in the case he’s talking about were represented by competent lawyers. Where were the lawyers and the accused themselves if the issues he is raising were relevant? What has sent Katele Kalumba and the rest is documentary evidence, witness statements and cross-examination of those witnesses.

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  2. The our judicial system continues to surprise. Does one not have loci standi as a citizen when challenging actions by a head of a government arm?
    Where does administrative law belong then?
    If our President, chief Justice or indeed the Speaker were to go insane and I wrote to the relevant authorities demanding for their removal from office, would I be denied because I have no loci standi as a citizen?
    Matters should be determined on merit, this is a clear failure of public confidence in the JCC.

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    • Can you explain why the lawyers and their clients did not raise these issues during the appeal? The court record does not show that they raised them.

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  3. The JCC is a compromised body of nodding mannequins. It failed to address the issues raised on their merits. If we use the same yardstick, then the JCC should explain why the case of the former DPP was considered worthy of it’s time. Elect clowns and you will get a circus

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  4. He keeps going to the Copperbelt and yet he has failed to address Mopani and KCM issues.

    It’s better atekefye amatako pa Lusaka

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    • If you lack local standing you cannot answer questions put to you by the other side. If the issues hv merit, why are the convicts’ lawyers not filing a complaint against the Chief Justice and Judge Jones Chinyama to the Judicial Complaints Commisdion? Are you saying here that Emmanuel Mwamba is a better defender of the interests of Katele Kalumba and the other three than they themselves and their lawyers?

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  5. What does the Law association has to say about this? How are ordinary citizens going to be heard? Do we have to be lawyers to complain about misconducts of judges? Do we have to pay some lawyer to have our complaints. What is this Locust standing? I am buffled? Who is going to help us? For Justice Malila and Chinyama did misconduct themselves in the matters raised by Mwamba. What is the way foward? Ba LAZ?????

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    • Yes, I would welcome a statement from the Law Association of Zambia. Knowing them as I do, I think one is on the way.

  6. PF and its tantrum mourners – keep on as the wheels of justice are grinding slowly but sure – See Lubinda entangled in his corruption web, forgetting what he told the court minutes before he responds to the next cross examination question.

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  7. Two very important cases that cannot easily be thrown away…….
    1. This caseof Mumba Malila and Chinyama is of great interest to the public, the lawyers and law Students. Please open it and lets hear it.
    2. The case of Milingo Lungu, Madam Siyuni and the Current DPP regarding the Nolle. Its of interest to the public and law students. Lets hear it.

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    • As Attorney-General during LPM’s presidency Mumba Malila served in Government after taking over from George Kunda. He sued Katele Kalumba and others on behalf of the Government of Zambia in an English court. These were civil proceedings in another jurisdiction. The criminal matters were taking place in Zambia and the DPP was the Government officer who had conduct of the proceedings and not Attorney-General Mumba Malila.

  8. To add to what Gunner has stated, this matter was adjudicated upon and determined by the Courts, including the Subordinate Court, High Court and the Supreme Court. The parties were legally represented and therefore their lawyers or even the litigants themselves would have locus-standi before the JCC. An ordinary citizen including Mwamba would have locus-standi on a matter not litigated upon.

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    • In criminal proceedings I do not see how a non-party can have local standing. He was not even a witness. Emmanuel Mwamba is trying to rewrite the law.

    • The JCC is not a court. Its role is to investigate complaints against judicial officers, that being the case it cannot choose who has the right to complain. The approach taken means that only injured parties have the right to complain. If we accept that logic then why did the JCC proceed to hear the complaint against the former DPP?

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    • Umwaume, it’s about hw cogent the evidence against the accused remained after being weighed against the defence provided. The injured parties who were ably represented by competent lawyers are not dead or incapacitated. Prod them to complain to the JCC so that the local standing technicality falls away. Will you, Umwaume? Don’t say you were not told about one of the options open to those who think the JCC has acted unfairly.

    • If an injured party has evidence of judicial misconduct during trial, I think the JCC has a duty to investigate it. In this matter, the JCC is actually saying they’re willing to investigate Chief Justice Malila and Justice Jones Chinyama if the persons raise a complaint. Even those with locus standi raised a complaint , I think it would still be dismissed because it’s only the DPP who conducts criminal proceedings and not the Attorney-General. The English court proceedings were civil in nature and took place in another jurisdiction. As for Justice Chinyama, he convicted the other two as a Magistrate on different facts. There’s no limit to the number of times an accused can appear b4 the same judicial officer as long as the facts are different.

  9. Do not worry we shall vote him ooit and bring back UNIP for Zambians to be able to enjoy the fruits of independence. He never even participated in the struggle for independence.

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  10. ITS GOOD THAT MOST ZAMBIANS HAVE REALIZED THE REASONS WHY THE THIEVES , CORRUPT . SELFISH , TRIBALISTS, BOASTFUL AND POWER HUNGRY CROOKED PEOPLE HAVE TEAMED UP TO DISTURB THE VISION AND GOOD WORKS OF HH.SOME OF THE MAIN REASONS INCLUDE ; 1, HH IS A HONEST LEADER and DOES NOT ALLOW THIEVING AND CHEATING Which THE TEAM LOVES AND THEY CAN’T STEAL AS USUAL, 2. FROM THE HISTORICAL POINT OF VIEW AND THEIR TRIBALISTIC BEIEFS , BASED ON PREJUDICE , THEY NEVER BELIEVED SOE ONE ELSE COULD BE A REPUBLICAN PRESIDENT OF Zambia, IN THIS CASE , THEY ARE NOT HAPPY . 3. HH IS GOVERNING THE NATION IN A CREDIBLE AND SYSTEMATIC PROGRESSIVE MANNER AND THE Other TEAM IS FEELING VERY MUCH CHALLENGED AND LOOK FOOLISH WHEN COMPARISONS ARE MADE

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  11. Kikiki these Judges come from one region and you expect them to do justice.Forget about going to court.I have never seen people who use tribe to think instead of helping the country.They have forgotten that we have a future generation and using tribal to think is going to destroy the nation.Anyway KK warned us.

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    • Moscow(op), go and read the judicial record. It’s now a public document. Go to the JCC or Constitutional Court and file a complaint citing tribal persecution. This trial started during the Mwanawasa presidency through the Banda presidency, the Sata presidency and Lungu presidency in the Magistrates Court, High Court and later the Supreme Court. The decision was the same.

  12. Just an after thought, I hope most people read this. Pilato the PS reported DPP Siyuni to JCC for her actions concerning immunity deal with Milingo Lungu.
    The JCC went on to hear that complaint and ultimately recommended her dismissal.
    Why did Pilato have the right to challenge DPP for her public actions but Mwamba cannot challenge CJ for his public actions?

    • First of all explain why the convicts and their lawyers hv not filed a complaint to the JCC against the Chief Justice and Supreme Court justice Jones Chinyama. Emmanuel Mwamba even if he’s granted a hearing by the JCC cannot explain why there was overpayment to the American companies because he was not party to the decision to overpay. The accused themselves failed to explain and you think Mwamba can explain. I believe that’s why the JCC dismissed it on grounds of lacking local standing.

    • The point u should consider Chiza Chirwa is the Supreme Court heard the appeal in the presence of state prosecutors, lawyers of the appelants and the appelants themselves. The DPP sitting alone granted immunity to prosecution to Milingo Lungu without the presence of interested parties such as the majority shareholder of KCM Vedanta Resources PLC who were likely to be affected by this decision. After granting Milingo Lungu immunity, I doubt it the DPP even informed Vedanta Resources.

  13. MOSCOW IS JUST PREOCCUPIED WITH THE TRIBALISM SYNONYMS JUST LIKE THE WAY HIS MASTERS IN PF ARE. TRIBALISM , CORRUPTION , STEALING AND IDEOLOGIES OF CADERISM WIL ALWAYS MAKE YOU THINK AND BEHAVE IN SUCH A BACKWARD WAY.

  14. Emmanuel Mwamba cannot last any cross-examination even if he’s granted a hearing by the JCC. That’s why his petition to the JCC has been dismissed. In criminal matters the parties are the state and the accused, end of story. If Emmanuel Mwamba had something useful to say in defence of the accused, they would have called him as a witness. As in fact happened, he was not called to testify in their defence. If sanctions follow him in his crusade to discredit the Supreme Court, he will accuse the court of thinking it’s above criticism. In this connection, I wish the JCC had allowed his complaint to be heard and Mwamba would hv been humiliated during cross-examination.

    • Gunner, you are wrong. A complaint needs to be heard on its merit. You inform the JCC why you are complaining. They hear the complainant, present it to the accused who has an opportunity to argue their case.
      Did you see Pilato attend the JCC hearing as a witness? No.
      Why then should you expect for Mwamba to be called as a witness?
      His allegations, much like Pilato’s, ought to be used to investigate the trial. No need to bring in any witness.
      Judge Mulife who has been nominated to the Concourt has a hearing before the JCC where he has been reported for misconduct, the accused is not called as a witness.
      Lastly, Mwamba is challenging actions of a public officer, it doesn’t matter if it’s a criminal matter or not. The actions of the CJ are being challenged.

  15. The JCC can choose to call witnesses or not to call witnesses Chiza Chirwa. When complaints were raised against DPP Mutembo Nchito, witnesses were called. One such witness was Bredner Changala who denied authoring any letter of complaint against DPP Nchito. Changala actually said that the then Solicitor-General authored the letter which Changala signed to complain against the alleged misconduct of Nchito. That’s how nasty it was.

    • The law was changed in 2016 bwana. The procedure of the JCC as it stands is that you can challenge actions of the judicial officers by filing a complaint and they have to decide on the merits of the offence, nothing to do with whether you have loci standi. If there is merit, they hear you. Pilato was never called as witness, why would there be a requirement for Mwamba to be called?
      Once again, the law allows anyone to challenge, if Pilato can challenge DPP without loci standi, why shouldn’t Mwamba do the same?
      This is double standards bwana.

    • The door is not completely shut for Emmanuel Mwamba. Editors of the Zambian Law Report and legal scholars will will no doubt examine this issue and pass their verdict also. Muna Ndulo did as much on the conduct of Constitutional Court judges in HH’s petition against the election of Edgar Lungu as President of the Republic of Zambia in 2016. Don’t ask me why the JCC can choose to call witnesses or not to call witnesses, Chiza Chirwa because I’m non the wiser.

  16. Gunner, I wasn’t asking you, i was challenging your statement that Mwamba would have to be called as witness. Pilato’s complaint did not have him testify. A complaint against a judicial officer (including DPP) to the JCC is the requirement for them to institute proceedings. This question of locus standi is mute.
    I hope I have been able to convince you as such. This was a wholesome exchange without name calling.

    • Indeed it’s a wholesome exchange btwn you and me. I’m enjoying it immersely. Perhaps it’s high time you told Emmanuel Mwamba to tell the convicts to complain to the JCC so that the local standing argument gets tested.

    • Perhaps the other point that should be made is this. Suppose Katele Kalumba and his fellow convicts had not appealed to the Sprene Court, would Emmanuel Mwamba hv filed an appeal to the Supreme Court on their behalf?

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