The Constitutional Court has subpoenaed Minister of Justice Given Lubinda and Attorney General Likando Kalaluka to testify in the matter in which the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) has sued the President, the Attorney General and the National Assembly for tabling the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill 10 of 2019 in Parliament.
The court has asked the Minister of Justice and the Attorney General to present documents in any form which should show how the decision to alter the Constitution as set out in the bill will protect the Constitution and promote democratic governance in Zambia as required in Article 61 of the current Constitution.
The Court has also asked Mr Lubinda to outline the challenges or constraints faced by Zambia in the governance of the Republic since the amendment of the current constitution on January 5, 2016.
In this matter, LAZ petitioned the Constitutional Court seeking a declaration that the respondents’ decision and the extent to which it seeks to amend the Constitution in the manner set in the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill No. 10 of 2019, is illegal because it contravenes Articles 1(2), 8, 9, 61, 79, 90,91, 92 and 79 of the Republican Constitution.
The Law Association is further seeking an Order (of Certiorari) that the Petition be allowed and that the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill No. 10 of 2019, which evidences the Respondents’ decision to amend the Constitution in the manner provided therein, be removed forthwith into the Constitutional Court for purposes of quashing.
LAZ is also seeking any other remedy the Court may consider just in order to defend the Constitution and resist or prevent its overthrow, suspension or illegal abrogation, among other reliefs.
The subject matter of LAZ’s Petition, which has been made pursuant to Article 128(3)(b) of the Constitution, is challenging the decision by President Lungu to amend the Constitution of Zambia in the manner set out in the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill No. 10 of 2019 (Bill 10), the decision by the Attorney General to sign and present to the National Assembly, Bill 10 to amend the Constitution in the manner provided in the said Bill and the decision of the National Assembly to publish in the Government Gazette Bill 10, to amend the Constitution, and the National Assembly’s decision of August 2, 2019, to table the Bill for the First Reading.