Category Archives: Zambian Law

Guy Scott must resign: Here is why

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

 There is no legal framework upon which cabinet could fire Guy Lindsay Scott as Acting President of the Republic of Zambia. Guy Scott can only be fired if a question about his mental capacity or physical capability has arisen. However, as a people, we are perfectly in order to request that Scott recuses himself from acting as executive head of our republic considering how he has bizarrely failed to unite his party and the nation with it. Political settlements are a legitimate part of governance. Zambia is neither a “legalcracy” nor is it a “technocracy”, but a “democracy”. Politicians should be able to talk to one other, pressure each other and, within limits of the law, make deals for the good of the country. It is in this vein that we should welcome the decision by cabinet ministers to try and negotiate for an exit strategy for Guy Lindsay Scott.

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

Guy Scott of Zambia

I am asking Scott to resign on the basis that he has failed to provide leadership to our country. Scott has sabotaged the ruling Patriotic Front and with that has also sabotaged good order for our government. Some of our people are downplaying the significance of the wrangles in the ruling party. I am of the view that wrangles in the PF do have national security implications. We cannot just treat the PF as any other club. It is a party in government. As such, it is important to know that what happens in the PF could potentially affect the good order of our nation. Scott has failed to provide leadership in his party and this will spillover to the nation. How could Scott claim to preside over millions of Zambians, if he cannot preside over a simple affair of leadership selection in his own party?

Some are arguing that it is the ministers who should resign and not Scott. This argument is very laughable. Scott tried to fire Lungu while Sata’s body was still lying in state. This backfired upon him. He had offended the good sense of Zambian tradition. We gave him a benefit of doubt. We hoped that he would come around. And then the inevitable followed. He lost nearly all the PF’s Members of the Central Committee. Then he lost support for the PF ordinary members who went to Kabwe and elected Edgar. He also lost support of the PF parliamentary caucus. Scott has now lost support of cabinet. How does a guy continue to preside over national affairs when he has no moral authority?

I am aware though that the opposition parties are in support of Guy Scott. This is understandable. But the opposition needs to be cautioned that supporting Scott in his rampage to sabotage the Patriotic Front is insincere and could plunge our peaceful nation into chaos. Scott should not think that our country would go to elections without PF. It is ridiculous to exclude the PF in the elections just as it would be ridiculous to exclude any other party from participation in elections. This is why Scott’s letter to the Electoral Commission of Zambia and to the Chief Justice asking her not to receive Lungu was in bad taste. It was an assault on democracy. It was an act that has the potential to inflame tensions in the nation. It was a provocative act. Scott should go ahead and hate Lungu all he wants, but in so doing, he should not mortgage the good peace we have enjoyed since independence.

The signs were all clear for all to see. It was only Scott who was blind to this reality. Lungu may have his own weaknesses and he definitely has questions to answer to the people. Nevertheless, after the passing of President Sata, MCCs, MPs, and several cabinet members rallied behind the leadership of Lungu. Clearly, had Scott been a good leader and a good reader of national moods he should have sensed that. But instead of facilitating a fair process for the adoption of a candidate, Scott went on create chaos and mayhem all aimed at frustrating Edgar Lungu. And at whose expense? At the expense of the nation’s peace and good order? Scott cannot make choices for the Zambian people. Zambians will elect a leader of their choice on 20 January 2015. We do not need Guy Scott to tell us why Lungu or HH are preferred candidates. We can figure that out on our own. Scott though has a duty to be sensible and reasonable so that he doesn’t cause unnecessary chaos inspired by his diabolical disgust for Lungu.

Guy Lindsay Scott

Guy Lindsay Scott

Scott is now changing stories. He is claiming that all of his cabinet colleagues are on him because he has refused to abuse government resources for campaigns. I should reluctantly state this to Scott: “Kabepeniko bambi.” Scott is not acting this way because he wants to preserve government resources. Scott is behaving this way because, in spite of repeated indication from the Patriotic Front, he has chosen to sabotage Lungu’s candidature for reasons best known to himself. This is ridiculous. A presidential transition is a very delicate time and moment. We do not need sabotage but unity. To claim that ministers should not use their government vehicles is not only silly but also laughable. During by-elections ministers do use their government vehicles to campaign. Why should that be different now? Wasn’t Scott using state resources when he campaigned in the Zambezi by-elections? What about during the Livingstone by-elections didn’t Scott and Sata’s ministers use their official vehicles? What has changed now? Perhaps, what has changed is Scott’s desire to block Lungu at any cost. Scott should know that it is only the people of Zambia who can stop Lungu. Come 20 January 2015, the people will decide. Lungu could go ahead and use his government car. But the ultimate decision remains with the people on 20 January 2015. Scott should not play with the minds of people like “utwaice”. We have issues with theft, corruption and nepotism. For him to inject it while he fights a senseless war in PF is in bad taste.

In 2011, Rupiah had all the cars and the cash. And what happened in the elections? He was don’t kubebad. We Zambians have this matter in total control. Scott should not use legitimate concerns as a façade to hide his own contempt for a leader the PF has chosen for itself.

Munshya wa Munshya

Munshya wa Munshya

Scott has no confidence of the PF’s MCCs. He has no confidence of members of cabinet. He has no confidence of the ruling party’s parliamentary caucus. He has lost control of the ruling party. This makes him a ruler with legal power, but no political or moral authority.

The only confidence he seems to have at the moment is from opposition parties. And that, by itself, speaks volumes of why he is giving us so much drama. Scott should save us the drama and resign. If not, he should then lead us peacefully so that we can subject both Lungu and Hakainde to the will of the Zambian voter.


Suggested citation:

Munshya, Elias (2014). Guy Scott must resign: Here is why. Elias Munshya blog. ( 18 December 2014

Hakainde Hichilema, Edgar Lungu and the Politics of Contrasts and Comparisons

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

The campaign time has come in earnest. It seems all the parties now have a general idea of who is going to be their presidential candidate. It is game on. Without being sub judice, it is clear that after the discharge of the injunction against Rupiah Banda, the ECZ and several other interested parties almost certainly are taking him as the MMD’s presidential candidate. We, however, await the determination of the final matter to know for sure whether Nevers Mumba will bounce back to lead the MMD into the by-election.


Zambia Decides

By far the winner on the campaign trail so far has been Hakainde Hichilema. Time has worked to his advantage. While the PF and the MMD were embroiled in bitter internal wrangles, HH had the time and support from his caucus to take his “Zambia United” tour across the breadth and depth of our country. This tour had taken him to Solwezi, Nakonde, Kapiri Mposhi and Kabwe. He has also been to Chama, Isoka and Kasama. If there is any candidate that has had a head start to this campaign it is Hakainde Hichilema. The infighting going on with his competitors has helped him sharpen his message. Those discontented with both the PF and the MMD have expressed support for Hichilema’s candidacy. Some MMD Members of Parliament such as Felix Mutati have now pledged to help campaign for Hichilema. It does look like this election will be his to lose.

Even though Hichilema’s campaign has had all these strengths, his fragilities are also quite enormous. Hichilema only campaigned with his wife once: during the launch of his candidacy. And that was the last time we heard of his wife. In Zambia, most successful presidential campaigns must greatly rely on the help of spouses. The Hichilema campaign team should find a way of involving his wife. If she cannot address rallies, they should at least find a way to take of lot of pictures of her with her husband. It is not necessary for her to talk or to address masses like her husband, but it will be good for the optics of Hakainde Hichilema to have Mrs. Hichilema appear with him. Generally, Hichilema appears stiff and rigid on the campaign trail. He has tried to loosen up a bit by biking along other supporters in Chipata. He has also been pictured dancing to some tunes on rallies. That is positive and helps shed off the stiff, business-like and serious appearance.

As stated earlier, the other thing HH needs to work on is to make more appearances with his wife. This is important to the electorate who for some reason still highly regard family unity. The second reason is that spouses somehow humanize candidates. There is something that a spouse brings to a campaign that a candidate cannot. When we look at Michael Sata’s campaign, his wife Christine Kaseba helped humanize him and brought support on her own. Chiluba had Vera during his 1991 campaigns. And so did Levy Mwanawasa, have Maureen, during his 2001 campaigns. I just hope that Hichilema will make his wife a little bit more visible. She has a lot to add to the campaign.

Mrs Lungu addressing a rally in Mongu alongside husband

Mrs Lungu addressing a rally in Mongu alongside husband

PF presidential candidate Edgar Lungu has already identified this reality and has his wife by his side during campaigns. She spoke at Edgar Lungu’s rally in Mansa making her husband to quip, “this woman could as well grab my Chawama seat”. That exchange of words can only work to the advantage of Edgar Lungu. It shows that they both as a family are ambitious and want to rule the nation. It also shows that both Edgar and his wife are susceptible to the temptation and trappings of office: a reality that rarely works against any political couple. Spouse involvement in politics also gives the people something to talk about apart from the real boring issues. In politics real issues could be monotonous, repetitive and uninteresting. But what can never be boring is the accent of a wife of a presidential candidate. People would like to gossip about how a spouse wears her Chitenge and how she does her Brazilian hair. They want to talk about how she looks and what she says. In the end, such talk only goes to humanize candidates. It also translates political rhetoric into a more common conversation. And today, between Hichilema and Lungu, Lungu looks more human, and casts a common man image to the electorate. In the ballot box, people would more certainly vote for a candidate they feel identifies with them. Hichilema has a lot of good things going well for him. But he needs to repackage his optics and his wife and family could help him do that.

Hakainde Hichilema

Hakainde Hichilema

Another matter of great interest is with regard to “tribal perception”. When Lungu went to Mansa, speakers included Kalaba, Inonge, Bwalya and Lubinda. When Hakainde Hichilema spoke in Mumbwa and Kabwe campaign speakers comprised Maureen Mwanawasa and Charles Milupi. That being the case, it appears like Lungu has a more diverse team than HH appears to have. This is not a matter of factual reality, but a matter of perception. And perceptions do matter in Zambian politics. Hichilema needs to deliberately diversify the team he takes on his campaigns. When he went to Muchinga this week, he appeared with Felix Mutati. But he needs to do more than just appear with Mutati. Diversity must appear sincere on HH’s part. It should not appear like he is just trying to work with Mutati to win votes. There has to be some changes in HH’s campaign team to show that he is willing to genuinely work with other political players, particularly those coming from the Northern-Muchinga corridor. The Hakainde campaign team should ask themselves, why is it that in spite of a lot of hard work in this area, his party and campaign still gets perceived as regional or tribal? They need to quickly work on some optics. In Kasama when he visited the Chitimukulu, it was very disappointing that no one came to HH’s defense on time. By the time Mutale Nalumango was responding, it was already too late and Father Frank Bwalya had already taken over the narrative reinforcing the idea that UPND had lied about the Chitimukulu endorsement. What HH needs is a quick response team that handles sensitive tribal issues, especially with regard to Northern-Muchinga-Luapula corridor. This corridor could prove decisive for HH. If he cannot find those that can willingly work for him, he can at least hire someone to do that for him.

This campaign period will be about real issues. But sadly, it will also be about feelings, perceptions, and other irrelevant things. A candidate wins not because they have handled huge issues very well. Candidates win because they connect with the voters sometimes at very personal levels. It is in this regard that we must caution those that are underestimating Lungu simply because he did terribly during the Radio interview. Lungu might not be the best speaker, but if he were able to connect with the common man on the street, it would be difficult to beat him. With good management and change in optics HH could as well become that inspiring politician demanded by the common man and woman.


Suggested citation:

Munshya, E. (2014). Hakainde Hichilema, Edgar Lungu and the Politics of Contrasts and Comparisons. Elias Munshya Blog ( 13 December 2014

Why It is Illegal for Guy Scott to fire or transfer government officers

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

News that the government of Acting President Guy Scott has either fired or transferred some senior government workers makes sad reading. We should all be concerned when a transitory government purports to perform functions that are outside its mandate. According to Article 38 (3) of the constitution of Zambia, a Vice-President who is performing functions of a President after the death of a substantive President cannot “revoke any appointment made by the President”. That being the case, it is illegal for the government of Guy Scott to replace Bert Mushala with Chanda Kasolo at the Ministry of Information. Some have advanced two arguments why they believe the Guy Scott government is in order to replace Mushala with Kasolo as Permanent Secretary. We will deal with each of these arguments in turn.

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

Some are arguing that the Guy Scott government is in order because in essence what they did was just transfer Mushala from Information and in his place they brought Kasolo. According to this argument, what is forbidden in the constitution is “revoking” the appointment and not “transferring” the worker. Now this is a very weak argument. If an action has the same effect as “revocation” then it should be condemned as such. We all know that there is a reason why an Acting President should not be revoking the appointed officers. An acting president as the name suggests is a temporary leader who assumes executive functions for the ninety days between the death of one president and the election of the next. During this time, it is expected that no major changes should take place in the government. Transferring senior government officers does have the same effect as revoking their appointments. First, it unsettles the basic structure of a government. Second, it sends a chilling effect on government officers to toll the line of the temporary leader. This temporary leader does not have the legitimacy to command such allegiance. Third, it could jeopardies the country’s good order and security. If security agents in Zambia feel insecure during a moment of executive transition, we have no idea how they would react to such activities. There is some strength in knowing that the basic officer structure left by the late President Sata should remain unchanged during the transition.

Guy Scott can't do through Msiska what the constitution disallows him to do - Munshya

Guy Scott can’t do through Msiska what the constitution disallows him to do – Munshya

The second argument being advanced is to the effect that, in fact, it is Secretary to Cabinet who has done the transfer and not Guy Scott. For the lack of a better term, this argument is absolute nonsense. The Zambian system of governance is a “political system”. Having a political system means that both the civil service and the armed forces are under oversight, supervision and control of our elected politicians. In Zambia, the Secretary to Cabinet even if she is the head of the civil service does not make personnel decision at Permanent Secretary level. This is the preserve of an elected and sworn President. Consequently, according to our constitution, the political leaders are estopped from changing the fabric of the senior civil service in the ninety days of an executive transition. As such, the Secretary to Cabinet does not have the power nor the authority to do what he is purported to have done. If Guy Scott is estopped from making changes, this certainly means that Secretary to Cabinet Msiska is equally estopped from making changes. In essence, Guy Scott cannot accomplish indirectly through Roland Msiska, what he cannot accomplish directly through his office. That which the constitution stops Guy Scott from doing, cannot be done by hiding through the signature of Dr. Msiska. It is an open secret that in the don’t kubeba government, systems and basic government decency has been heavily compromised. But we must do all we can to remind this government to do right. Even after the death of President Sata, this maltreatment of our system was exhibited. Instead of having the political leadership announce the passing of the President, it was a procedural indignity for the death of a republican president to be announced by a Secretary to Cabinet. After all is done, it will be good to make an inquiry into what exactly transpired in this sacrilege in protocol.

By stating that our system of governance is a “political system”, we do not in any way state that “professionals” or “technocrats” are irrelevant. What we are stating is that professionals and technocrats have a place in our system. But their place is not in usurping the role of elected representatives of our people. Zambia is not a technocracy it is a democracy. It is in this vein that we should agree with what Miles Sampa stated at one point when he was at Ministry of Finance. When he was a Deputy Finance Minister, he had differed with some technocrats there. In responding to them, Sampa made it clear that the role of technocrats is not to make “policy” but to implement it. Policymaking is a preserve of elected representatives who have political accountability to the people of Matero or Milenge as the case may be. Since technocrats are not directly accountable to the people, our system of governance makes them amenable to politicians and then politicians in turn are amenable to the will of the people. Zambians voted for Sata, for Guy Scott and will vote for Sata’s successor on January 20, 2015. Zambians never voted for Roland Msiska, and as such, he should exercise only those powers that are consistent with his role as Zambia’s most senior civil servant.


Scott shouldn’t behave like a substantive President

Another concern we have that has insolently blurred the divide between politicians and the civil service concerns the so-called “District Commissioners”. The DCs are supposed to be civil servants. As civil servants, they are not political representatives of our people. It is surprising how these unelected DCs usurp civic and municipal functions that should be left to respective mayors and councilors to perform. DCs behave as if they are the mini-presidents or mini-ministers of their districts. This is a huge anomaly. To put it another way, a DC is not to Milenge what Sata was to Zambia. Again, my DC friend in Ithezi Tezhi is not to that town what Munkombwe is to Southern Province. We will leave that discussion to another day.

But for now, we condemn Guy Scott’s deplorable way of governing by transferring government officers. It is illegal, to say the least. We urge him to exercise restraint especially during this time that his party is undergoing a political bloodbath. During these times, there is a great temptation to act irrationally and to abuse power. We urge Guy Scott to be reasonable. A warning is in order. Scott could be thinking that he has political bombasa. But immunity is so unreliable as a way to hide what we Zambians perceive to be illegal. All Scott needs is to ask Bo Rupiah Banda and he will be told that in “bombasa” Zambians do not trust!


This article appeared in the print edition of the Zambia Daily Nation on Friday 21 November 2014. Munshya wa Munshya on Friday column appears there every Friday.


Rupiah Banda should form his own party and stop “ubuloshi”

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

Nevers Sekwila Mumba

Nevers Sekwila Mumba

If RB wants to stand, it would be great for the likes of Mulusa and RB to form the Movement for Bwezani and Mulusa (MBM) so that they can field RB. They should leave the MMD so that the party functions under the leadership of its elected president. What RB is doing to MMD, is not leadership but treachery. This is not how an elder statesman behaves, this is the way a spoiled child behaves. In other words and indeed for a lack of a better term what Rupiah Banda is doing can be called “Ubuloshi.”

No one should ever defile Rupiah Banda’s right to aspire for the presidency. He is a very old man, but he is a citizen nevertheless with full constitutional rights to stand for the presidency. Our constitution gives rights to babies as well as very old men and women. However, what is really offensive and unacceptable is corruption, theft, treachery, nepotism, and “ubu loshi”. You might ask me what is “ubuloshi”? I do not mean that RB ni ndoshi, here is my definition of political “ubuloshi”. Going behind the back of an elected leader and engineering a “political comeback” by poisoning the minds and hearts of the very people that were responsible for the failure of the MMD in the first place.

Handing the torch of leadership to the young is not easy. It requires great discipline from the old. It is remarkable that Mandela did it. Banda has the right to contest on his party which he and Mulusa will form, but he should not bring this confusion and tumult to the MMD. Why should these UNIPIsts be allowed to kill the MMD just like they killed UNIP? Nevers Mumba could not have come up with any magic to change the declining fortunes of the MMD within 3 or 5 years. It would take time and sacrifice and discipline. Evidence is there to prove that parties usually decline when they have a transition in the presidency. The same happened to UPND, but UPND is on the upswing, do you know why? It is because, they kept the young HH even when everything was showing that he was losing it, and now the UPND is being rewarded.

The same should happen to the MMD. Give Mumba a chance. A chance to make mistakes. A chance to be himself. A chance to reinvent the MMD. A chance to work on himself as a leader. A chance to be a true political candidate. But even before he could even cough, Rupiah the poisoner Banda wants to come back through the back door.

So what happened then to the speech RB gave in 2011. What happened to all those lectures he gave at Boston University ? This is the problem when a leader hires speech writers to do speeches for him. RB is not committed to any thing he read because the speech was just written for him. My advise to RB is to go back to his lectures at Boston and to reread the speech his consultants wrote for him in 2011.

As for Mulusa and all the young like him, it is disappointing, very disappointing to say the least. For now, we await the formation of a party of Mulusa, Muhabi Lungu and RB because Nevers Mumba is likely to win the court case.

If the MMD is not happy with Nevers, wait for the general conference and vote him out fairly. Not this game. If Nevers is being disrespected because he is a former pastor, then we all who are connected to churches should be very concerned. You killed MMD. You stole using MMD. You did all sorts of wrong using the name of the party, and now that you wanted someone to lead you you went begging to Nevers and you elected him overwhelmingly. It is shocking that you want to kick him out and bring back the very guy who made MMD to lose in 2011. Ninshi? Sata afwa and Rupiah Banda feels like he can bounce back?

I do love Rupiah Banda. He is a very kind old man. He looks to be very humorous. He is a statesman. He has respect all over the world. But this treachery is unacceptable. My advice to him is ” Bo Bwezani, form your own party and leave MMD alone.”

Grieving the Cobra: Mourning President Michael Chilufya Sata

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

Michael Chilufya Sata

Michael Chilufya Sata

The passing of President Sata has been devastating to the nation. But while the nation mourns, we should never forget that the President was a father, a spouse, a grandfather, an uncle and a close relative to some citizens among us. The loss that these relatives have suffered is surely personal, deep and disheartening. Relatives and close friends are shedding inconsolable tears, weeping and mourning this loss. Indeed, while political cadres are busy beating each other up and causing confusion, we must never forget that, there is a tangible family grieving. In this period, we need to give the respect due to the First Lady and her family. During this difficult time, we must sympathise, empathize and share in the sorrow of this loss. It is not time for politicking.

Just as Hakainde Hichilema has said, the time for politicking will come. This time, we must exercise utmost grace to each other as we mourn. Acting President Guy Scott and Secretary General of the Patriotic Front Edgar Lungu have now signed a joint statement assuring the nation that they will behave themselves properly as we go through this mourning period. We must commend these two gentlemen and all the people that surround them for coming up with a ceasefire while the nation goes through this difficult time. It would be ridiculous for these guys to be “hiring” and “firing” each other while the body of the late Michael Sata lies in state at Mulungushi. Indeed, politicians must not turn this personal loss of the Sata family into a hive of “pangas” and “chipaye”. President Sata should be mourned in peace, tranquility and respect. He really deserves that.

Signing President Sata's book of condolences at Mr & Mrs Mate's residence in Cochrane, AB, Canada

Signing President Sata’s book of condolences at Mr & Mrs Mate’s residence in Cochrane, AB, Canada

Each of the late president’s relative or close friends will deal with this loss differently. Grief is very personal in many respects. No one should dictate to another how he or she should mourn his or her father, uncle, or grandfather. There is no one-way of mourning the late President Michael Sata. As such, the period of mourning itself should be an exercise in tolerance and patience. Relatives and close friends should know that the nation joins them in this loss. A grief psychologist Kubler-Ross has identified five stages that are typical during the time of loss. On average each person undergoing grief goes through these stages. The first stage is denial. Usually, when we receive sad news, the first reaction we lean towards is to deny it. We don’t want to hear the desolate news. There are many in the nation and indeed in the family that at first experienced denial. It is very normal to undergo this stage. When the news is very sad, it is a human reaction to want to deny its reality.

1937 to 2004

1937 to 2004

The second stage of grief is anger. Anger can come in different ways. It could come from a spouse who feels like she did not do enough. It could come from a relative who feels there might have been a better way to handle the loss. Anger could from children who feel like it did not have to be. During loss, like the nation is experiencing right now, it is easy to plunge into anger. In some instances, family members, in anger, begin to blame each other for their loss. Very often, a widow gets blamed for her spouse’s death even if she had no hand in it. This is not fair. While, it is normal for a grieving person to be angry, one thing we should never allow is to let anger lead to irrational and unfair choices. Anger is a powerful human emotion. It is a part of our humanity. During loss, it would be perfectly all right to experience this emotion. However, after we have experienced anger, we should transform it into something meaningful. The greatest respect we can give to the memory of President Sata is to transform the anger, arising from the loss, to something more positive for the nation and the family.

The third stage in the grieving process is bargaining. In grief, the bargaining stage is where one begins to “bargain” within themselves. They begin to try and soften the pinch of loss or death. At this stage, most people begin wishing something could be done about the loss. For Christians, they begin giving God conditions. They feel and think in terms what-ifs. The bargaining stage is where one begins entertaining the idea of a “resurrection”. It is a stage of wishing the departed would come back. When bargaining, a person experiencing loss could even decide to give up something valuable in the hope that doing so would make God change his mind and restore the loss.

The fourth stage is depression. The depression stage is where “we feel sad” about the loss. Here grief takes us to the level where nothing can sooth. The depression stage is that stage of loss where no one can see or feel. It is a personal stage. No one can really know how painful your loss is. Each person experiences this stage differently. It is all right to feel sad. We are human after all. We are bound to feel sad. Jesus himself wept at the loss of Lazarus. The children, the spouse, the relatives, and the close friends of the late President should be joined by the nation in feeling sad over this loss.

The Cobra who charmed a nation

The Cobra who charmed a nation

The fifth stage is acceptance. Now this stage is not about feeling that the loss is “okay” but rather feeling that this loss is actually real. In the acceptance stage, the loss event is accepted as valid. You are not trying to deny it exists, but rather you recognize the pain and embrace it. In this stage, you let go and recognize the inevitable. The acceptance stage is the most powerful of all these stages. It is challenging though. It is challenging in the sense that most of us as humans are reluctant to come into terms with our pain. We do not want pain. We do not want to be reminded that the president is no more. But painful as it may be, it is important that we move towards acceptance. Acceptance of loss is epitomized in one Ushi adage which states that “pafwa abantu pashala bantu”. This adage reinforces the idea that those that have lost a father, should take courage in the fact that the father did indeed leave behind warriors to take over from where he left. It is this courage that leads to acceptance of the grief.

Regardless of what we say about loss, however, there will never be a replacement for those that have departed. The pain is real. The loss is painful. But after we have grieved, it will be time to pick up the pieces and try to move on, with hearts still reeling from the pain of the loss. But as a tribute to the life of the departed, we must not give up on life. We must do all we can to make Zambia a better nation for it is through this action that we will truly demonstrate our fidelity to the life and times of Michael Chilufya Sata.

Exclusive: Edgar Lungu’s response to Guy Scott


I have learnt with deep regret the illegal and provocative action taken by Dr. Guy Scott purporting to dismiss me as Secretary General of the Party.
This action is illegal and has no foundation or support of the PF party constitution. But most importantly, Dr. Guy Scott has insulted our culture and the people of Zambia by constantly engaging himself in matters that undermine the dignity, honour and respect of the funeral of President Michael Sata.
I am aware that they are serious maneuvers to reinstate Mr. Wynter Kabimba as Secretary General of the Party. These maneuvers are also designed to undermine the decision made by President Michael Sata on 28th August 2014 and the wishes and interest of the party.
I’m also aware that there is an attempt to usurp state and party powers to a group now commonly known as the ‘’cartel”.
The action by Dr. Guy Scott to illegally assume the office of party president and to pretend to perform such functions therein in the absence of the harmonization of this constitutional conflict, is promoting disharmony.
The two articles are quoted below:
(1) In the event of the President of the Party resigning, or being removed from Office of The President of the Party, he shall cease to be President of the Party and the Secretary General shall act as President of the Party until the new President is elected in accordance with provisions of Article 48 of this Constitution.
• (2) In case of absence of both the President and the Secretary-General of the Party, the President of the Party shall choose one from amongst the members of the Central Committee to perform the functions of the President of the Party until such a time as the President or Secretary General of the Party shall resume his duties.
(1) The Vice President shall have the following powers, duties and functions:
• a) to be the principal assistant to the President of the Party;
• b) to exercise all such functions as may be delegated to him by the President;
• c) to act for the President in his absence;
• d) To exercise the functions of President in case of death or removal from office in terms of Article 53.
I have referred this matter to the Central Committee to consider and resolve.
Article 53 reposes power in the Office of the Secretary General as Acting President of the Party in the event of the absence, resignation or being removed until a new party president is elected.
I am cognizant of the fact that a single section under Article 54 (d) also purports to repose powers in the Vice President to act as Party President when the office party president falls vacant through death.
Owing to this serious lacuna and conflict in the party constitution designating powers and functions of the president to two offices, it is imperative that this matter be urgently resolved by the Central Committee.
I have therefore called for an emergency Central Committee Meeting to be held tomorrow Tuesday 4th November 2014 to consider the following agenda items;
• The purported letter of dismissal
• Taking action which in the opinion of the Central Committee is in the best interest, security and development of the party and the state in accordance with Article 58(l) and 58(m).
• And to resolve matters relating to Article 53 and Article 54
The Central committee has powers to resolve all matters as listed below:
• POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE The Central Committee shall have the following powers and functions:
• (a) Supervising the implementation of the Party policies and programmes;
• (b) Programming Party policies as formulated by the General Conference or the National Council;
• (c) Enforcing discipline among members and officials of the Party;
• (d) Regulating and controlling activities of all organs of the Party;
• (e) Ensuring that records of all Party activities are kept and supervising proper maintenance of records and books of accounts at all levels of the Party organization;
• (f) Exercising the function of orientation and leadership of the Party;
• (g) Initiating, whenever possible, Party policies for consideration by the National Councilor the General Conference;
• (h) Orientating and controlling activities of the central organs of the State and other public institutions in the country;
• (i) Guiding and giving correct orientation to popular mass organizations;(j) Hearing appeals from appropriate disciplinary bodies;(k) Summoning regular or extraordinary meetings of the National Councilor the General Conference;
• (I) initiating and approving changes in the Regulations and Rules of the Party;
• (m) Taking action which in the opinion of the Central Committee is in the best interest, security and development of the Party and the State;
• (n) Constituting such administrative structures at the Party National Headquarters as may facilitate smooth and efficient functioning of the Party.

I also note that Dr. Guy Scot had on Friday 31st October 2014, announced the banning of meetings including the holding of meetings by the Central Committee.
This action is also illegal as during this difficult and sensitive moment, Dr. Scot is expected to benefit from the wisdom and counsel of the Central Committee and not from strangers and members of the group famously referred to as the “Cartel” currently surrounding him.
Dr. Guy Scott is expected to defend the interest of the Patriotic Front, its values and is expected to adhere to the provisions of the letter and spirit of the party constitution.
I wish to warn all members and party leaders including, Dr. Guy Scott to act with restraint as the nation is in mourning and the body of His Excellency, President Michael Sata is lying in state at Mulungushi International Conference Center as President Sata deserves to be mourned with utmost dignity, peace and respect.
It should be made very clear that our restraint is out of utmost respect for the departed, His Excellency, President Michael Sata, is not a sign of weakness.
The people of Zambia are resolved to safeguard peace during this time of mourning.
Zambia attained its independence to uphold peace, unity and to uphold human dignity and therefore actions spoiling for a political fights runs counter to these values

Hon. Edgar Lungu, M.P

Answering Misheck Shulumanda on the question of Guy Scott and treason

A gentleman by the name of Micheck Shulumanda has asked a few questions over the propriety of Guy Scott acting as president. He is challenging the use of Article 38 instead of Article 39 when deciding who should act as president. I wish to provide some answers.

  1. If the President appointed Minister of Defense and Justice, and PF Secretary General Hon Edgar Lungu to act under Article 39 (1), on what basis did the Attorney General advice Cabinet that Dr. Guy Scott is the rightful person to Act?

Article 39 operates when a President is alive. Article 38 operates when a President is “dead” and there is a vacancy in the presidency. The death of Michael Chilufya Sata triggered the operation of Article 38 as a vacancy due to death arose.

  1. Why did the Attorney General only rely on Article 38 which deals with vacancy in the office of the Presidency without addressing himself to Article 39 (1) under which Hon. Lungu should have been appointed since the President left the country for medical purposes?

There was no need to address himself to Article 39 because President Sata died. When a President dies, a vacancy in the presidency is declared and that triggers sections of the constitution that deals with a “vacancy”. One such section is Article 38.

  1. Why is it that President Sata never allowed Vice President Guy Scott to act as President if not for the reasons that he was incapable to perform functions of the office of President? Why should he act now that he is dead?

I do not know why President Sata never allowed Scott to act. Guy Scott can act now that President Sata is dead, because as you have said it, he is dead. President Sata and his actions or inactions are never a source of constitutional law in Zambia. The source of Zambia’s constitutional law are as follows: (1) the text of the constitution, (2) the judgements from the Supreme Court and the High Court, (3) unwritten conventions from our English Common law heritage, (4) Acts of parliament. His Excellency President Michael Sata or any president are not a source of Zambia’s constitutional law. Guy Scott is acting now, because there is a vacancy in the presidency on account of the death of an incumbent.

  1. Was President Sata on the wrong side of the law when he asked others to act even when the Vice President was verily available in the country?

This question has no relevance to the matter at hand. The question is not about whether Sata was right or wrong, but rather what should happen in the event that there is a vacancy in the presidency. According to our constitution, the repository of Executive power in the event of a vacancy in Zambia is the Vice-President.

So has, Attorney General Musa Mwenye committed treason? Not a bit.