ATTORNEY General Likando Kalaluka has asked the Constitutional Court to declare President Lungu eligible to stand as a presidential candidate in 2021.
This is in a matter in which four opposition leaders, Christian Democratic Party president Danny Pule, Wright Musona of Zambia Republican Party, New Congress Party president Peter Chanda and Robert Mwanza of the Citizens Democratic Party, have petitioned the court seeking a declaration that President Lungu is eligible to contest the 2021 presidential elections.
In his submission, Kalaluka stated that President Lungu was currently serving his first term of office.
“Applying the foregoing Constitutional provisions to the current Republican President’s election on 20th January 2015 and 11th August 2016, it is abundantly clear that the term served by the current Republican President following the elections of 20th January, 2015 cannot be deemed as a term as the time he consumed office, less than three years remained before the date of the next general election,” Kalaluka submitted.
“Therefore, it is our submission that the current Republican President is currently serving his first term in office as President on account of having served for less than three years from 20th January, 2015 and as such he is eligible to stand as a candidate in the Presidential election of 2021.”
He urged the court not to place “undue regard to procedural technicalities” to ensure that justice was done.
“We submit that in order to exercise judicial authority in a manner that ensures that justice is done, this Honorable Court should not place undue regard to procedural technicalities. We contend that to argue that 2015 Presidential election does not fall within Article 106 (5) (b) on account of the Speaker not having performed executive functions prior to the 2015 Presidential election, is that a vacancy in the office of President occurred (following the demise of late president Michael Chilufya Sata) and that it was not under Article 81,” stated Kalaluka.
“We submit that the purposive interpretation which takes into account the foregoing will lead this Honourable Court to arrive at an inescapable position that the current republican President is eligible to stand as a presidential candidate in the year 2021.”