By McDonald Chipenzi – Electoral Expert
I am somewhat happy that the Judge in nullifying the Munali Seat has referred to the Constitutional Court judgement on the ministers’ illegal extracting of public funds which they used in their campaigns thereby having undue influence in the electoral process.
As stated earlier, it was my encouragement to all losing candidates in constituencies where they competed with incumbents to petition because the constitutional court had made their case much easier and arguably good.
The Munali judgement is classic and should have sent shivers to those who have not paid the money that time will catch up with them. Those who have said to have won despite this truth, the petitioners should appeal to the Constitutional Court. I have in mind the Roan Constituency among others.
To this end, a by-election will be held within 90 days from to date if no appeals are made. This is in accordance with article 57 of the constitution.
This means we have two prospective by-elections namely Nalolo and Munanli…perhaps more will be added to the list and both the former holders of these constituencies qualify to contest in the ensuing by-elections.
However the onus is now on the registrar of the High Court or designated person to deliver a copy of High Court Report to the ECZ and DPP as guided by section 108 (7 and 8) of the Electoral Process Act No 35 of 2016. This is to enable the Commission recommend prosecutions. The Act further guides thus, “the commission shall, as soon as it receives the report.., recommend the prosecution of person(s) stated in the report by the director of public prosecutions”
It would be good to see prosecution of some of the culprits mentioned or involved in malpractices that led to the nullification of these seats.