LUSAKA High Court Judge-in-Charge Isaac Chali yesterday shocked MMD national secretary Muhabi Lungu and his deputy Chembe Nyangu when he discharged a matter in which the duo had challenged their expulsion without hearing the case.
Mr Lungu and Mr Chembe’s lawyer Mutakela Lisimba confirmed to the Daily Nation that Judge Chali informed the parties through his marshal that he had dismissed the matter because it had been overtaken by events following conclusion of the presidential election last month.
But Mr Lungu and Mr Chembe have since filed an application to set aside the ruling so that the matter could be heard but the implication of Judge Chali’s action is that the duo will remain expelled from the MMD.
Mr Lisimba said the action by MMD president Nevers Mumba to unilaterally expel Mr Lungu and Mr Nyangu was ultravires and it was only fair that the duo should have been heard before judgment could be passed. “We do not know what happened because we were seated outside Judge Chali’s chambers waiting to be called in. But when the time came to go into the chambers, Judge Chali sent his marshal to inform us that the matter had been discharged. We have already filed an application to set aside the judgment so that the matter could be heard,” Mr Lisimba said.
And Mr Lungu said it was shocking that Judge Chali could decide to pass a ruling before the matter could be heard and described the action as a miscarriage of justice.
Mr Lungu said the decision by Judge Chali was being challenged because the judgment was not fair.
He said the MMD would continue with its activities and that his faction would this weekend be holding a national executive committee (NEC) meeting to chart the way forward following the never ending squabbles in the former ruling party.
He said all NEC members have been informed and that they were determined to save the party from extinction because Dr Mumba had lamentably failed to provide leadership.