The infamous Chikopa Tribunal will remain illegal until all constitutional and legal issues that have been raised by the three accused judges are resolved, says National Revolution Party president Elias Chipimo.
But Judge Chikopa yesterday went ahead with his tribunal sittings even when former Supreme Court Judge Phillip Musonda had been granted leave for judicial review to refrain the Judge Chikopa Tribunal from proceeding to investigate him for alleged professional misconduct.
Judge Chikopa went ahead with the proceedings of his tribunal despite Judge Musonda and his defence lawyers representing the former Supreme Court Judge Musonda not attending the tribunal.
Mr Chipimo emphasized that until all legal matters raised by former Supreme Court Judge Phillip Musonda and two High Court Judges Charles Kajimanga and Nigel Mutuna are resolved by the Zambian courts, the Chikopa Tribunal will continue to be illegitimate.
He predicted that the court processes that have seen the Judge Chikopa Tribunal suffer three court injunctions could go on until the next general elections rendering the continued stay of the Malawian Judge in Zambia irrelevant.
Mr Chipimo argued that the determination by the PF government for Judge Chikopa to continue staying in Zambia for doing nothing was politically and economically unacceptable.
Mr Chipimo said it had become evidently clear that government had created the impression that it had a predetermined verdict against the three Judges by allowing Judge Chikopa to live in Zambia for more than a year while waiting the commencement of his tribunal.He reiterated his earlier call on Judge Chikopa to return to his home country until all the court process that were currently hindering the tribunal from proceeding were exhausted.
He said Zambians were angry that a foreign Judge was getting their money without earning it while they wallowed in poverty because the PF government had dedicated its time in power to politicking.
He said it could take several months before the court cases involving the establishment of the tribunal could be disposed of and that it was only morally correct for the Malawian Judge to go back to his country until when he was needed.
He said as it were, the Malawian Judge was further denting the Zambian judiciary that had already suffered severe fractures as a result of interference from the executive.
“Many people have demanded that Judge Chikopa must go back to his country but it would appear that he is colluding with government to continue with his stay in Zambia. This has sent a wrong message to the people and the respectful thing Judge Chikopa should have done was to leave Zambia and wait from his country,
“As things are now, his tribunal has suffered three court injunctions and it could be months before the courts could resolve the constitutional and legal issues the three Zambian Judges have raised in the courts,” Mr Chipimo said.
He said it would make sense if Judge Chikopa recused himself from chairing the tribunal because his integrity had been punctured by his close association with the executive.
Mr Chipimo said there was resentment among the general citizenry because of the manner Zambia being governed.