SADC Lawyers Association Worried over Judicial Interference in Zambia

A regional legal group has condemned the “unjustifiable suspension and removal of judges in countries like Zambia,” commenting that such measures have undermined the independence of the judiciary in the region.

According to a communiqué issued at the end of the 2012 Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Lawyers Association annual general meeting and conference in Ezulwini, Swaziland from, the lawyers’s group noted that judiciaries in the region were constrained financially and had limited confines within which judges are expected to exercise their mandate.

“Governments must ensure that the judiciaries in the region are adequately resources, are independent and are able to carry out their mandate without fear or favour,” the statement read.

On the constitution making process in SADC, the lawyers advised countries such as Zambia, Zimbabwe and Tanzania that are currently involved in constitution making processes to ensure that the resultant constitutions entrench principles of human rights, democracy, the rule of law, independence of the judiciary and other norms that encourage the establishment of free and democratic societies and eliminate dictatorship.

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