Chishimba Kambwili challenges speaker of Parliament in ConCourt. The ECZ has today set April 11, 2019 as the date for the Roan and Bahati parliamentary by-elections and seven local government by-elections in different parts of the country.
Chishimba Kambwili has petitioned the Constitutional Court to declare and order that the Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini’s declaration of his seat vacant is null and void.
But Kambwili, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) consultant, is seeking a declaration and order that he did not cross the floor as ruled by Speaker Matibini and that his parliamentary seat did not fall vacant.
He is further seeking remedies that the court may deem fit and that costs occasioned by the petition be borne by the Attorney General who has been cited as a respondent in the petition.
Speaker Matibini on February 27, 2019 declared the Roan seat vacant after a point of order by Malambo Member of Parliament Makebi Zulu.
Kambwili, however, stated that he came to learn that the reason for declaring his seat vacant was on account of his alleged ” floor crossing” from being a PF member under whose ticket he was elected to the national assembly.
He stated that he has, to date, not received any correspondence from the Speaker of the National Assembly nor the Clerk of the National Assembly in the usual manner of written communication whenever a need for communication has arisen.
Kambwili stated that on February 29, he learnt through various newspapers that the Speaker raised issues by referring to various cases or citation and legislation before arriving at a conclusion to declare his seat vacant.
He stated that he was fully aware that the notion of being a consultant engaged by the NDC was at all material times the subject of active litigation before Justice Mopani Kawimbe by way of counterclaim, a matter which has to date allegedly not been presided over by the court and awaits a hearing date.
Kambwili stated that he was fully aware that at various times, he had informed the Speaker and the Clerk about the case through various written correspondence which have been fully acknowledged of the litigation under cause no. 2017/HP/1238.
He submitted that he takes grave concern that Speaker Matibini, in his ruling, deliberately chose to disregard the fact that he was making pronouncements on a matter that was subjudice and yet to be determined by the High Court.
Kambwili added that he was equally aware that even if he had joined the NDC at the material time, a fact denied, Speaker Matibini acted on provisions in an event that did not provide for alleged floor crossing as provided for by law in the 2016 amendment of the Constitution and as canvassed in the MMD vs Akashambatwa Lewanika and others case.
He stated that his rights as a duly elected member of parliament had been severally infringed on by Dr Matibini and that the speaker violated various provisions of the Constitution in Articles 133, 134 and 135.
Kambwili, however, argued that the Speaker’s ruling and reliance on the case of the Attorney General and the MMD vs Akashambatwa Lewanika and others precedent to floor crossing was highly unconstitutional as it has now been suspended by amendments to the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia by virtue of Act No 2 of 2016 and in particular Article 72, which the Speaker allegedly breached in his ruling.
He stated that his case, which should be afforded a fair hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial court.
Source: Zambian Report