Miti Questions ConCourt Delay on Lusaka Central and Munali Petitions
More than two years after the 2016 elections civil society activist Laura Miti has questioned the delay in the final ruling of the Constitutional Court on the matters of the Lusaka Central and Munali parliamentary elections. The seats, held by Ministers Mwanakatwe and Luo, were initially nullified in November 2016. However, the rulings were subsequently appealed with the final determination yet to be made.
Miti writes as follows:
"What is the Problem at the Concourt?
What exactly is the reason behind the Constitutional Court's long delay in hearing the Lusaka Central and Munali election petitions? Is the hold-up procedural, financial, legal, work overload?? Isn't this the kind of ill the constitution was trying to remedy when it introduced a time limit for the petitions in the presidential election? A situation in which petitions drag on forever and then are disposed of when a term of office has essentially been served or denied. The Concourt really should get on with these cases. It's the same with the matter regarding President Lungu's eligibility to stand in 2021. Right now the President, top PF officials and his supporters are essentially in contempt of court every single day because they can't stop talking about his candidature in the next election. They are openly campaigning. We therefore have the Republican President repeatedly suggesting that a case that is active in court is academic. Isn't the Concourt worried about how that invalidates the ultimate authority of the courts as final arbiters in interpretation of the law? Don't the judges feel disrespected? So again, I ask, what exactly is the problem that is leading to the dragging of these cases?"