FORMER Attorney General Musa Mwenye says his comments on the challenges Zambians faced in accessing justice in the country is not malicious because they are the same challenges several organizations including the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) have highlighted.
Mr. Mwenye has defended his statement following President Edgar Lungu’s statement on Tuesday that he was going to consult LAZ if it was within the law for a person of his standing to question the credibility of the judicial system in the country following his (Mwenye’s) statement that he had no confidence in the judicial system in Zambia.
In a statement made available to the Daily Nation yesterday, Mr. Mwenye said he was not restrained to give an expert report over the poor Zambians who had sued Vedanta and KCM and were represented by English lawyers about various aspects of the law including the state of access to justice in Zambia.
He said his opinion delivered to the High Court in London was nothing new as the challenges he raised were highlighted before by other relevant authorities such as LAZ and that he was willing to share the same with the President.
“The lawyers for the poor Zambians who are seeking justice from Vedanta and KCM asked me to give an expert report on behalf of the poor Zambians who are suing Vedanta and KCM about various aspects of the law including the state of access to justice in Zambia. I gave my opinion to the High Court in London.
“I highlighted some challenges that poor people face in accessing justice in Zambia. These are challenges that have been highlighted by several people and organisations including LAZ and the judiciary itself. My comments were not malicious and nor were they untruthful. They were facts that have been stated by various persons including former presidents, lawyers, the judiciary and many other institutions.
He said as a member of the bar, it was his duty to aid poor Zambians to obtain justice from anywhere in the world.
“I wish to say that as a member of the bar and former Attorney General, I consider it my duty to aid poor Zambians to obtain justice from anywhere in the world against any form of injustices. I am ready to share my opinion with His Excellency the President whom I have no doubt has the interest of the poor Zambians, for whom I rendered that opinion, a heart.
‘‘I look forward to engaging LAZ and the judiciary over access to justice for the poor, a topic that has exercised the minds of both institutions in the past,” he said