Justice Minister, Mulambo Haimbe has clarified that the Constitution Court (Concourt) ruling yesterday on two former Members of Parliament, Joseph Malanji and Bowman Lusambo’s case was based on the meaning of causing a vacancy in the National Assembly as stated in Article 72 of the constitution.
Mr. Haimbe explained that among the four points of contention that were presented for interpretation by the two former MPs, the Concourt only dealt with what was meant by causing a vacancy in the National Assembly.
The four reliefs sought in the court were whether the decision by the Electoral Commission of Zambia dated August 24, 2022 is illegal, null and void, whether the applicants are eligible to contest the September 15, 2022 by-election, whether fresh nominations should be conducted to allow the two participate in the by-elections and what is meant by causing a vacancy in the National Assembly as stated in Article 72 of the constitution.
The Minister said in its ruling, the Concourt never made any pronouncements on whether ECZ’s decision on august 24, 2022 was illegal or wrongful, eligibility of the two former MPs to contest the by-election and whether fresh nominations should be conducted.
The Concourt only made a pronouncement on one relief regarding what is meant by causing a vacancy in the National Assembly.
Mr. Haimbe said it was therefore incorrect for anyone to give an impression to the general public that the Concourt declared the two eligible to contest the election or whether they are now duly nominated.
He further explained that the three questions which the Concourt refused to deal with because they were improperly before it, are now before the High Court for determination.
Mr. Haimbe stated that peddling misconceptions on the matter has the potential to cause anarchy in the country.
The Justice Minister has since called for calm as the High Court determines the issues in contention between the parties and the ECZ.