LAZ told to leave President Lungu out of Mutembo Nchito’s saga


Livingstone High Court judge Gaudentia Milimo Salasini (lef) and DPP Mutembo Nchito (right) interacting during the 3rd International Association of Prosecutors (IAP) Conference for the Africa-India Ocean Region in Livingstone at Zambezi Sun Hote

THE Law Association of Zambia should leave President Edgar Lungu out of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mutembo Nchito’s saga and allow the judiciary to operate independently without any external forces, Evangelical Youth Alliance International president Reverend Moses Lungu has said.

Rev. Lungu said LAZ should instead be in the forefront of guiding the nation on the next move to protect the office of the DPP from public odium.

Commenting on LAZ’s president George Chisanga’s appeal to President Lungu to intervene in the arrest of Mr Nchito, Rev Lungu wondered where the independence of the judiciary would be if the association which had been in the forefront of asking for judicial reforms could ask for the President’s intervention.

Rev. Lungu said it was total hypocrisy on the part of LAZ to ask President Edgar Lungu to intervene when they have always called for an independent judiciary.

“Is LAZ asking President Lungu to also intervene in former president Rupiah Banda’s issues which are political?

Is LAZ saying Mutembo Nchito is untouchable? Is LAZ saying Mutembo who did not enjoy immunity should not be investigated and prosecuted?

Is this the first time Mutembo has been asked to step down to pave way for investigations?” Rev. Lungu asked.

He noted that LAZ was not helping the nation to uphold the rule of law and sounded as if they were happy with Mr. Nchito’s conduct.

And UPND vice president in charge of Politics, Canisius Banda said Mr. Nchito had lived a life of controversy and flaws, adding that the UPND was not shocked because not long ago they had demanded for his resignation on similar allegations.

“That Mutembo Nchito has led a life of controversy, riddled with flaws, is not in dispute.

Because of his unsuitability to serve then, we in the UPND, speaking in defence of decency and on behalf of many voiceless citizens, were among the loudest and most consistent voices that called for either the removal of this DPP or his resignation,” Dr Banda wrote on his facebook posting yesterday.

LAZ in its statement said it was concerned with events surrounding Mr. Nchito and attempts to arrest him.

“The reported maneuvers by the law enforcement agencies in executing an arrest warrant against the DPP, which was issued in disregard of law and the reported subsequent arrest of the DPP in clear contravention of a High Court order to staying the execution of the warrant, have come to LAZ with a sense of immense shock,” the LAZ president said.

Mr. Chisanga said President Lungu was expected to intervene in the matter.
He described as a threat to the due process and constitutionalism the Police and the Chongwe Magistrate Moses Phiri’s action.

Mr Chisanga said what had happened to Mr Nchito had the potential of setting a dangerous precedence in handling of cases of alleged impropriety and misconduct against holders of constitutional offices.

Mr Nchito who escaped from police custody on Wednesday is still on the run.