The Lusaka High court has stopped David Chanda from masquerading as Democratic Front president.
This was in a matter in which the Democratic Front General Secretary Morgan Ngo’na applied for an interlocutory injunction to restrain Chanda from holding himself as a legitimate president of the party.
The ruling was made by Judge Chalwe Mchenga after he established that there was no evidence that Chanda was the registered president of the party.
Mr Justice Mchenga added that the only evidence was the disputed minutes of the meeting where Mr Chanda was indicated as having given up the position; in the circumstances there was nothing to suggest that the action had no prospects of succeeding.
He said the question of whether the minutes were forged or not would only be determined at trial.
Justice Mchenga indicated that in view of the fact that the evidence before him suggested that Mr Chanda was no longer the president of the Democratic Front Party, he found that the balance of the convenience lay with Mr Ng’ona .
The judge said since there was a dispute over the leadership of the political party, and given that the benefits or advantage of being a leader could not be quantified in monetary terms, he therefore found that the damages could not atone any injury that Mr Ngo’na may suffer should Mr Chanda continue claiming that he was the party leader.
Mr Justice Mchenga said it was his conclusion that Mr Ngo’na had shown that there was a clear right to relief that there were serious questions requiring determination at the trial.
He added that the plaintiff also showed that damages would not atone any injury that he may suffer if the defendant was not restrained and that balance of convenience lay with him.
Justice Mchenga therefore exercised his discretion and granted Mr Ngo’na interlocutory injunction as prayed.
The application was supported by an affidavit which Mr Ngo’na deposed that on July 21, 2014 Chanda registered Genuine People Platform (GPP) which was later transformed into the DF.
Mr Ng’ona further contended that on December 9 the same year at an extraordinary meeting the party installed new office holders following the meeting and Mr Chanda ceased to be the party president.
But Mr Chanda opposed that the December 9 meeting never installed any new office holders and that the minutes produced were forged, adding that the presidency position had never been vacant of which a report was produced in support of the proposition.
He also deposed that Ngo’na had never been the secretary general but one Adwick Nyendwa and that it was evident from the records from the court and the Registrar of Societies that Nyendwa was the party secretary general.
In reply Ngo’na deposed that Chanda signed the disputed meetings as outgoing president and denied the claim that they were forged.
He added that Chanda had since vacated the presidency of the party.At the hearing one of the counsel submitted that the injunction should be granted because Mr Ng’ona indicated that there was a serious matter to be tried as Mr Chanda had been holding himself out to be DF president just before the incoming general elections and the pleadings showed that the matter was likely to be determined in favour of Mr Ng’ona.
He added that if Chanda was not granted the injunction he would not suffer any great inconvenience because he was not the president of DF.