THE Law Association of Zambia says those aggrieved by judges’ conduct must take the matters to the Judicial Complaints Commission instead of attacking them in the media.
In a statement, LAZ President Linda Kasonde stated that attacks on judges were undermining the independence of the Judiciary.
Kasonde stated that LAZ condemned publications which seemed to disapprove decisions made by judges in cases which were before the courts of law.
“…. The said articles and reports seem to criticise decisions made by judges in cases which are before the courts of law. LAZ is saddened by these publications as they undermine the independence of the Judiciary and deprive the particular judges a right to be heard and respond to the allegations,” Kasonde stated.
“…The recent articles and editorials published by certain media organizations are an attack on the aforesaid principal of Independence of the Judiciary which is a basic tenet of a democratic society and may diminish the integrity of our Judicial system. LAZ strongly condemns the attacks on the Judiciary in the press especially as this is not the appropriate forum to deal with any alleged misconduct or shortcomings of Judicial officers without a fair hearing.”
Kasonde however noted that no judicial officer was immune from oversight.
“Although the importance of the Judiciary cannot be over emphasized, it is equally true that no Judicial officer is immune from oversight or sanctions where they are found wanting. Article 144 and Article 236 of the Constitution makes provisions for Complaints to be made to the Judicial Complaints Commission against Judicial officers,” stated Kasonde