The Lusaka High Court has refused to grant judicial review to 54 United Party National Development members of parliament who were challenging Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibini’s decision to reprimand them for boycotting the official opening of Parliament.
In her ruling, Judge Susan Wenjelani said she was not satisfied that there was an arguable case before her and that it was not fit for further investigations.
Judge Wenjelani also declined to issue committal proceedings against speaker of the national assembly Dr Matibini and clerk of the National assembly Doris Mwiinga and other Parliament officials saying it lacked merit.
This means that the opposition members of parliament have lost the court’s protection and any decision which Speaker Matibini shall make on their boycotts will stand when business resumes in June.
In an affidavit in support of ex-parte summons for leave to apply for judicial review filed in March, UPND secretary general Stephen Katuka had stated that Speaker Matibini’s action was dictatorial and a bulling tactic to cow UPND members of parliament into submitting to President Edgar Lungu; whose legitimacy was still being questioned before the courts.