Sun, 29 Jan 2017 09:43:06 +0000
By NATION REPORTER
HAKAINDE Hichilema’s wild and disparaging statements against the judiciary are an unacceptable and a recipe for anarchy, Justice Minister Given Lubinda has charged.
Mr Lubinda expressed concern that Mr Hichilema had a tendency of not following any laid down procedures for doing things especially legal matters.
He cited his support for Fred M’membe’s demand that justice Sunday Nkonde was not supposed to preside over an application to liquidate Post Newspaper because he brought an action againt the newspaper when in private practice.
Mr Lubinda, who is also Patriotic Front (PF) Kabwata Member of Parliament, was reacting to Mr Hichilema’s continued attacks on the judiciary and cited his claims that justice Sunday Nkonde was a disgrace who must immediately leave the judiciary because Zambians didn’t want judges like him.
This is in a matter in which Fred M’membe has written to Commercial Court judge-in-charge Mwiinde Siavwapa and Chief Justice Irene Mambilima arguing that judge Nkonde, who is presiding over an application to liquidate Post Newspapers, was not supposed to sit in the matter because he brought an action against the newspaper when in private practice.
But Mr Lubinda told Sunday Nation in a telephone interview from in Addis Ababa Ethiopia that Mr Hichilema had no authority to ask any member of the judiciary to resign without following procedure.
“If he has any issues, let him do what is provided for in the law. He cannot ask Judge Nkonde to resign on his own. No! He must follow the law. The law is clear on what he should do.
“Hichilema must learn to follow laid down procedures for doing things especially legal matters. There are laid down procedures, Zambia is a democracy and Zambia’s governance record is impeccable,” he said.
Mr Lubinda explained that the Zambian Constitution established the Judicial Complaints Authority which was the competent authority to adjudicate over matters of negligence or misconduct on the part of any member of the judiciary.
Mr Lubinda said if anyone was aggrieved by the performance of any member of the judiciary they should never climb an anthill or flag posts or flag mast to go and shout that a member of the judiciary was misconducting him or herself.
He said what anybody who had issues with any judge ought to do was to go and table their complaints before the Judicial Complaints Authority which would in turn investigate the matter and make a ruling.
“It is very well laid out, in the event that the Judicial Complaints Authority establishes a prima facie case, then it would write to the President for that judge to be suspended and to be put on his or her defence.
“So, if Mr Hakainde has any issues with any particular member of the judiciary, let him do what is provided for in the law. Let him go and lodge his complaint before the Judicial Complaints Authority,” he said.