Attorney General is right, Lungu is eligible to contest in 2021 – Tayali

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President Lungu

Chilufya Tayali has agreed with submission made by Attorney General Likando Kalaluka that President Lungu is eligible to contest the 2021 elections.

In a statement below, Tayali says under the current Constitution President Lungu qualifies to contest the 2021 elections because he served less than three years when he won in a by-election after President Sata died.

Tayali says:

The problem with many people in our Country is lack of objectivity due to polarization (you are either for PF and Edgar Lungu or against him, belonging to some opposition party which can’t accept anything positive about PF and Edgar Lungu).

This situation has clouded even the most learned of our Country. As long as they don’t like Lungu, they will not agree with him even on the law. They wuld want to twist the law.

I am sorry, I am not like that and I refuse to be biased albeit being in opposition. Where I don’t agree with President Lungu and the PF in general, I will criticize, like I have done on many instances, including on Ministers paying back, HH treason case, Fighting corruption, arrest of Siwale, to mention but a few.

On this issue of eligibility, I agree with the Attorney General (AG), albeit disagreeing with him on many other issues before.

My analogue is this;

Suppose a man commits murder and the constitution stipulates that, punishment for such a crime is “Death”. However, as the case is being tried, the constitution changes to abolish death penalty. On the day of conviction, which constitution will the judge follow to pass the sentence, the old one or the new one?

Let’s take the argument even further, suppose this person was even convicted and sentenced to death, but before the death sentence is executed, the law changes, to abolish death sentence and replacing it with Life imprisonment, will the President sign the execution order or this sentence will automatically change to life imprisonment?

This interpretation is what was used in the case of Chiluba Vs those who challenged his nationality. The judges said that, those who were in Zambia at its birth (24th October 1964) became Zambians and it did not matter whether you were from Malawi or Congo or wherever, because the NEW Constitution become into effect.

Coming back to those arguing that Lungu is not eligible because at the time he was elected President the constitution did not consider the 3 years for a term, as long as you are sworn as President that is it.

It did not matter for how long, one serves as President, as such, you only had to be sworn twice, that is it.

But now, the constitution has changed and it talks of serving at least 3 years for it to be considered a term.

The question is, which law are we going to use to judge Edgar Chagwa Lungu on the eligibility?

Yes, at the time Edgar was sworn-in the law never spoke about 3 years, but the law has changed, so which law are we going to use, the old or new?

If you say we are going to use the old law, then I rest my case, he does not qualify, but if you are going to follow the new law, then he qualifies because he did not serve for 3 years after Sata died.

The argument that he did not ascend into power out of being a Vice President as stipulated by the new constitution where we have a running mate, does not make logical sense.

The issue is that, at that time, for one to be come a President, one had to go through an election and that was done. At that time one would not become President out of being a Vice President, because the only way was through an election. Even if Guy Scott was eligible, he would not have taken over as President without an election.

Nonetheless, the issue we are looking at, is not the condition under which one becomes President, the is question here is whether one is eligible or not.

As far as I am concerned, Lungu is benefiting from the change of the Constitution whilst he is in office, he is eligible.

It is the same thing for those who want to bar HH from contesting by introducing new law which stops one from contesting more than 2 times. If that law would be passed, HH would not be barred, because it would have just come in effect.

Let just campaign to win over Lungu if he will contest in 2021, otherwise, the man is eligible.





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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31