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‘Constitutional Court to be operational’

ATTORNEY General Likando Kalaluka.

‘CATHERINE MUMBA, Lusaka
ATTORNEY-GENERAL Likando Kalaluka has assured that the country will have an operational Constitutional Court and Court of Appeal before the August 11 general elections.
And Mr Kalaluka says the decision to exclude deputy ministers in the new constitution is not a lacuna but a deliberate decision by Zambians who deemed the positions an expense.
Speaking when he featured on the Sunday Interview on Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) television, Mr Kalaluka said his office, in collaboration with the Judiciary and the Judicial Service Commission, will soon come up with a bill to be introduced to Parliament next week to operationalise the two courts.
“Hopefully the bill will be passed and we will have a fully operational Constitutional Court and Court of Appeal before the polls,” Mr Likando said.
He said, during the same period, the Judicial Service commissioners will be working round the clock to see who can be appointed as judges to run the two courts.
He said the two courts cannot operate without an Act of Parliament, which describes the processes and procedures for which it will be run.
Mr Kalaluka said any issues that require to be dealt with by a Constitutional Court before it is operationalised will be handled either by the Supreme Court or High Court since it was only introduced last month when President Lungu assented to the constitutional amendments.
And commenting on the exclusion of deputy minister in the new constitution, Mr Kalaluka said it was a deliberate decision made by Zambians who deemed it an expense.
Mr Kalaluka said by operation of the law, deputy ministers will continue performing their duties until parliament is dissolved.
He, however, said after the August 11 elections, Zambia will not have deputy ministers.
“But we now have a new law that permits an individual to petition parliament to do an amendment to any law, so people who do not agree with this law can call for an amendment,” Mr Kalaluka said.
He said any member of Parliament (MP) who loses his seat by either resigning or being lawfully expelled from his political party will be barred from recontesting it in a by-election.
Mr Kalaluka said this law will make MPs remain loyal to political parties that sponsored them to get the seat and reduce unnecessary by-elections.
He appealed to various stakeholders to educate people on the referendum which will be held alongside the general elections and urged Zambians to first assess how the new constitution will work for the nation before calling for other amendments.

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