IT is unheard of and unprecedented for a judge to suspend the decisions of a sitting President and so the Judicial Complaints Commission (JCC) should probe Judge Mwila Chitabo to establish the premise used to overrule President Edgar Lungu, PF secretary general Davis Chama has said.
And Mr Chama has demanded that the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ), the body governing and regulating the conduct of lawyers should also consider investigating the misconduct of Director of Public Prosecution Mutembo Nchito who has been suspended as DPP.
“We hope the relevant interest groups will act to correct this anomaly of humongous proportion that casts the name of the President in bad light and the entire judiciary into question. An immediate probe into why all matters related to the investigations, prosecution and suspension of the DPP Nchito are handled by Judge Chitabo on recommendation of the assigning judge is important,” Mr Chama said.
He said the President deeply believed that if the DPP was innocent, he must face the tribunal and clear himself rather than hide behind a stay, when he himself initially said only a tribunal could state whether he remains in office or not.
Mr Chama said his culture did not condone those that deliberately disrespect elected leaders, adding they always showed respect following allegations of gross impropriety.
“In other words, why is the assigning judge, Isaac Chali, always giving Judge Chitabo cases that have something to do with the suspended DPP? Can’t other judges handle these matters?
Are we being told other judges on the bench are not competent enough to hear Mr Nchito’s matters? It is these questions that beg for answers,” he said.
Mr Chama advised the acting Attorney General Abraham Mwansa to immediately ensure that the tribunal was re-instated.
He demanded that Mr Mwansa puts an end to the wanton disregard for the Presidency and the constitutional powers that go with it.
“We would like to make it clear that Zambia is a country of laws, therefore, law breakers shall not be allowed to reign supreme at the expense of millions of law abiding citizens,” Mr Chama said.
He said in setting up the tribunal, it was President Lungu’s honesty and deep belief as a lawyer, based on the Blackstone theory that: “It is better that 10 guilty persons escape than one innocent person suffer”.