News

PF takes GBM case to Supreme Court

ALVIN CHIINGA, Lusaka
THE State has appealed to the Supreme Court against the judgment of the Lusaka High Court that United Party for National Development (UPND) vice-president for administration Geoffrey Mwamba is still a PF member of Parliament (MP) for Kasama Central.
According to a memorandum of appeal, Solicitor-General Abraham Mwansa has asked Judge Florence Lengalenga to stay the execution of a decision she made on March 23, 2016 awaiting the outcome of the appeal in the Supreme Court.
In her ruling, Ms Justice Lengalenga declared that Mr Mwamba was still an MP under the PF ticket.
She subsequently ruled that Speaker of National Assembly Patrick Matibini acted in excess of his power by declaring Mr Mwamba’s seat vacant.
This followed Mr Mwamba’s appointment as UPND vice-president for administration, a move which meant he had crossed the floor of the House, in contravention of article 71(2) (c) of the Constitution.
According to the memorandum of appeal, the State has appealed because it was not satisfied with Ms Justice Lengalenga and filed an appeal on three grounds.
In the first ground, Mr Mwansa argues that Ms Justice Lengalenga erred in law and fact by deciding that Dr Matibini was wrong to declare the seat vacant instead of referring the issue to the court.
Mr Mwansa is of the view that Justice Lengalenga erred in law and fact in deciding that the Speaker acted illegally or ultra vires the provisions of Article 72 (1) (a) of the Constitution.
He further contends that Ms Justice Lengalenga erred when she found that Mr Mwamba’s legitimate expectation to have the status of his parliamentary seat determined by the High Court was breached by the declaration of the seat vacant and ordered that he be paid his emoluments.
In his certificate of urgency, which he also filed yesterday, Mr Mwansa asked Judge Lengalenga to, in the meantime, stay her decision until the outcome of the ruling at the Supreme Court.
Mr Mwansa contends that overly, there is no power that the High Court possesses to interfere with the internal proceedings of the National Assembly.

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