LUSAKA High Court judge Anessie Banda-Bobo has warned parties in President Edgar Lungu’s impeachment case that she will not allow unnecessary adjournments in the matter. In this case, two Lusaka residents, Robert Chabinga and Henry Mulenga, have sued the Attorney General over the decision by Speaker of the National Assembly Dr Patrick Matibibini to table President Lungu’s impeachment motion moved by Mazabuka member of parliament Garry Nkombo and former Roan member of parliament Chishimba Kambwili.
When the matter came up for hearing last week, parties in the matter sought an adjournment stating that they could not proceed with the case as they had to attend the National Dialogue Forum (NDF).
Justice Banda reluctantly granted the adjournment to June 24 but warned that she was adjourning the matter for the last time and ordered both parties to file submission before the next date of hearing.
“I will reluctantly grant the last adjournment. If parties, particularly the plaintiff will not have filed their submissions by the date the court guides, I will proceed based on the evidence on record. The plaintiff should file by May 23 and the respondent to file by June 7. Matter comes up on June 24,” she said.
On April 4, 2018 justice Banda had halted the impeachment motion that was presented before Parliament pending determination.
In her ex-parte order for leave to apply for judicial review Judge Banda-Bobo granted the application which operated as a stay and stopped the Speaker from tabling the Notice of Motion to impeach the President.
Judge Banda-Bobo also dismissed Kambwili and Nkombo’s application to suspend the proceedings pending determination of the appeal in which they were challenging her decision throwing out their application to join the proceedings as interested parties.
In this case, Chabinga and Mulenga are seeking a declaration that the Speaker’s decision to accept and table the motion to impeach President Lungu was unreasonable, procedurally improper and illegal.
They also want a declaration that the motion was unreasonable because individuals who appended their signatures were members of the UPND, therefore the Speaker should have exercised reasonable observation before tabling the matter before Parliament.