It is illegal for Lusaka Mayor Miles Sampa to appoint a Councillor as Acting Mayor-Malupenga
Ministry of Local Government Permanent Secretary Amos Malupenga says it is unlawful for Lusaka Mayor Miles Sampa to appoint a Councillor as Acting Mayor.
Mr. Malupenga who addressed the media in the presence of Attorney General Likando Kalaluka clarified that a mayor has no powers to appoint a Councillor as Acting Mayor in his absence.
He said the decision to appoint an Acting Mayor is ultra-vires Section 20 of the Local Government Act, Chapter 281 of the Laws of Zambia.
Below is the statement:
The decision to appoint an acting Mayor is ultra-vires Section 20 of the Local Government Act, Chapter 281 of the Laws of Zambia. When the Mayor is absent from the Zambia, the law is very instructive, when it reads:
Section 20 [Discharge of functions of mayor or chairman during vacancy or absence]
”Whenever the office of mayor or chairman of a council is vacant or the mayor or chairman is absent or is for any other cause prevented from or incapable of discharging the functions of his office-
(a) the deputy or vice-chairman of the council; or
(b) if the office of deputy mayor or vice-chairman is vacant or the deputy mayor or vice-chairman is absent or is for any other cause prevented from or incapable of discharging the functions of his office, a councillor elected by the council;
shall discharge the functions of the office of the mayor or chairman of the council.”
The Deputy Mayor is in the country and her office is not vacant. There is no justification for the Mayor appointing another person.
Secondly, assuming the Deputy Mayor was incapable of performing the functions of the Mayor, there is no provision in the law allowing the mayor to appoint any councilor as acting mayor.
The law provides that the Council shall elect the councilor to act as Mayor where both the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are not available.
Source: Lusaka Times