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Assenting to the Const. Amend. Bill of 2016 was out of love for Zambians, President Lungu says



PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu says assenting to the Constitution amendment bill number 10 of 2016 was a bold and selfless act he undertook because doing so cut off his powers.
The head of State, who is also the governing Patriotic Front president said the decision to assent to the 2016 was bold and selfless because it cut presidential powers and further strengthened democracy in the country.
President Lungu said he learnt he learnt a lot from the death of PF founding leader Michael Sata and amending the constitution was one of them.
He was speaking this afternoon when he opened the PF virtual elective conference which also saw him retain the party presidency unopposed.
President Lungu said the amended constitution saw the inclusion of a running mate to a presidential candidate and so consequently gave birth to the constitutional court and court of appeal.
In a case of a death of a sitting head of State, the costly presidential by election are avoided as the running mate simply takes over as President of the Republic.
“It ( the amended constitution) included the implementation of a devolved system of government and the general strengthening of accountability among the various organs of the state.
” There were also persistent calls for dual citizenship, especially from people in the diaspora. This is now provided for in our Constitution and we have been able to retain many of our people we had lost to other countries,” President Lungu said.
The head of State said the Constitution Amendment Bill number 10 of 2016 also removed uncertainty [and suspicion] associated with the date of elections by including a clause which states that elections will be held every five years during the second week of August.
President Lungu said it is his love for the country that drove him to assent to the 2016 constitution without taking into account personal ramifications.
Meanwhile, President Lungu also took time to highlight achievements of his administration since assuming office.
“There is no doubt that my government has made massive investments in infrastructure for power generation, transmission and distribution. These investments in the power sector have taken place against a back drop of social economic challenges the country is facing including adverse climatic change which has led to reduced power generation at Zesco’s major hydro power plants,” he said.
The Constitution further demands that political parties hold their intra-party elections and so far some of the notable parties to have held general conferences include the United Party for National Development (UPND) which saw Hakainde Hichilema being elected as the party’s presidential candidate in the August 12, general election.
The law further requires that a candidate garners more than 50 percent of votes plus one.
Other political party leaders such as Wynter Kabimba of the Rainbow Party, Edith Nawakwi (veteran politician) of Forum for Development and Democracy, out spoken Chishimba Kambwili of the National Democratic Congress and those from outside the country were in attendance.
The conference was held under the new normal with strict adherence to the COVID-19 prevention measures which included social distancing while those in provinces followed deliberations virtually.


President Hichilema to continue living at Community House, as Concourt dismisses petition against his stay at the private house



THE Constitutional Court has dismissed for lack of a merit Patriots for Economic Progress president Sean Tembo’s petition challenging President Hakainde Hichilema’s continued stay at his private house instead of shifting to State House.

This means that the President will continue staying at his private Community House in New Ksama.

Passing judgment, Constitutional Court deputy judge president Arnold Shilimi  said the court found Mr Tembo’s petition to have lacked merit  because the constitution does not compel the President to move to Nkwazi House.

Further, the judge said the court found that Mr Tembo’s plea for the court to declare an order compelling the President to shift to State House is not tenable considering that no law that obliges the Head of State to reside at State House.

“We find that in the absence of any Constitutional provision or any other law that compels the President to reside at State House,and in light of the Respondent’s[Attorney General] submission on the dilapidated state of Nkwazi House requiring high cost of renovations.

“The alleged constitutional breaches relating to the President’s alleged refusal to shift to State House lacks merit and is misconceived,” Judge Shilima said on behalf of other judges who heard the case.

“We find that the alleged breach relating to the right to life is improperly before this court for want of jurisdiction over part iii of the constitution,” he added.

The court consequently dismissed the petition for lack of merit.

In this matter, Mr Tembo petitioned the Constitutional Court over President Hichilema’s refusal to relocate to State House since he was elected in August, 2021.

The politician had submitted that the President was spending huge sums of money through his trips from Community House to State House on a daily basis and putting at risk the safety of many Zambians on the route he is using to access his house.

He  further argued that the huge sums of money which was being used on a daily basis, about K126 million per year, could be channeled to other areas of need such as procurement of drugs in hospitals and books for readers in schools.

However, in reply, the State, through Attorney General Mulilo Kabesha, argued that the petition lacked merit because Mr Tembo  did not cite the particular article or law which mandates the president actually reside at State House.

He also argued that accommodation of the past Presidents at State House was only a matter of practice or custom and not law.

(Mwebantu, Saturday, 9th December, 2023)

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Masturbation comment invites Sean Tembo to court



PATRIOTS for Economic Progress president Sean Tembo has pleaded not guilty to using insulting language when he compared the intervention to sale cheaper ZNS mealie meal in the wake of escalating prices of the commodity prices to masturbation.

The outspoken businessman has been charged with use of insulting language which he allegedly uttered on October 17 this year, the eve of National Day of Prayer, Fasting, Repentance and Reconciliation.

Allegations are that on the material day, the accused said “Bally is selling a few bags of ZNS mealie meal using Shoprite, hoping to create a perception of low price is equal to masturbation”.

The sentiments are alleged to likely provoke Abel Mashowo, who reported the case, to break the law or commit any offence against Tembo.

When the case was called today, a magistrate readout the charged and asked the accused whether he understood it.

In response, Mr Tembo responded in the affirmative and pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The court adjourned the case was adjourned to next month for commencement of trial.

(Mwebantu, Friday,  8th December, 2023)

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DPP wants more punishment for CK



THE State, through the Director of Public Prosecutions, Gilbert Phiri, has filed a notice to appeal against the five months sentence imposed of Chishimba Kambwili after he was found guilty of promoting hate speech by uttering tribal remarks.

On Thursday, Mr Kambwili, a Patriotic Front member of the central committee, was sentenced to five months imprisonment with hard labour.

This was after the Kasama Magistrate’s Court found him guilty of the offence of expressing or showing hatred, ridicule, or contempt for persons because of tribe or place of origin.

After being hailed, the politician appealed against the verdict and was later released on bail pending hearing of his appeal against the sentence.

But the DPP has filed a cross appeal seeking to challenge the five months jail term imposed on the outspoken former Roan MP.

Mr Phiri feels the sentence was too lenient and that when his application is being heard, he wants to be present in court..

“I, the above named appellant(DPP) , hereby give notice that I desire to appeal to the High Court against the sentence of the accused person.

I desire to be present when the court considers the appeal,” the notice of appeal, which has been circulated online, reads in part.

(Mwebantu, Thursday, 7th December, 2023)

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