Chief State Advocate Joe Simachela has stated that the petition in which Patriots for Economic Progress (PeP) party leader Sean Tembo is seeking for a declaration that President Edgar Lungu violated the constitution by receiving a gift of land from King Mswati of the Kingdom of eSwatini, without declaring it may be disposed of purely on affidavit evidence without the need of calling witnesses.
This is according to an affidavit in opposition of Inter Parte summons for leave to issue subpoena against state witnesses.
Tembo filed an application before the Constitutional Court to compel the witnesses among them Minister of Information and Broadcasting Dora Siliya and the Special Assistant to the President for Press and Public Relations, Amos Chanda to appear before court and testify in the case.
However, the application for subpoena of witnesses will be heard in chambers by Justice Martin Musaluke on Thursday, November 22.
Meanwhile hearing of the main matter is expected to be heard in December during sitting of the Constitutional Court.
In this matter Mr Tembo is also alleging that the head of state violated Article 92(1) of the Constitution as well as Section 21(1) of the Anti-Corruption Act No. 3 of 2012, for receiving a gift of land from King Mswati of the Kingdom of eSwatini, without declaring it.
Tembo sued the Attorney General Likando Kalaluka seeking for a declaration that President Edgar Lungu violated the constitution when he allegedly accepted a gift of land from King Mswati of Eswatini formerly Swaziland in his official capacity as a Republican President.
The petitioner further wants a declaration that the President is a public officer and that all public officers in their official capacity were prescribed by law to obtain gifts other than casual gifts from people.
But in response the defendant Kalaluka asked the Court to dismiss Tembo’s petition because the petitioner is not entitled to the claims he seeks against the head of state adding that all the claims in the petition are misconceived and lack merit.
Kalaluka argued that a person holding the office of President was not a public officer as the constitution which is the supreme law of the land excludes a person holding such office from being a public officer.
Kalaluka further challenged Tembo to prove President Lungu did receive a gift a gift from King Mswati and that the gift so received by President Lungu was received using his position as Republican President , office , authority or any information in his possession as President.