The declaration of Zambia as a Christian Nation has been maintained in the proposed constitution.
And people like Guy Scott will now qualify to run for president as the proposed supreme law only requires a candidate to have been born in Zambia or be a Zambian by descent – born to Zambian or one Zambian parent outside Zambia.
The preamble to the constitution which contains the Christian declaration has been slightly amended to say:
‘WE, THE PEOPLE OF ZAMBIA, IN EXERCISE OF OUR CONSTITUENT POWER: ACKNOWLEDGE the supremacy of God Almighty; DECLARE the Republic a Christian Nation, but uphold the right of every person to enjoy that person¡¦s freedom of conscience or religion’.
Zambians outside the country can now seek citizeniship of those countries without fear of being declared foreigners in Zambia. But those with dual citizenship shall not qaulify to Zambia for president or vice president of Zambia.
‘A citizen shall not lose citizenship by acquiring the citizenship of another country’ And that ‘a citizen who, before the commencement of this Constitution, acquired the citizenship of another country and, as a result, ceased to be a citizen shall be entitled to apply to the Citizenship Board of Zambia to regain that citizenship.’
This simply means that those people who lost the Zambian citizenship can get it back if this constitution is adopted and passed into law.
On election to the presidency, the draft law wants people who only have grade 12 certificates to qualify to stand.
It says: ‘a person qualifies to be nominated as candidate for election as President if that person – (a) is a citizen by birth or descent; (b) does not have dual citizenship; (c) has been ordinarily resident in Zambia; has obtained, as a minimum academic qualification, a grade twelve certificate or its equivalent; (f) is conversant with the official language’.
But the proposed law disqualifies psychos from running for president. It says a person shall qualify if he does not have a mental disability that would make the person incapable of performing the executive functions’.
The draft constitution is not very clear on the contentious issue of gay rights. It does not out rightly rule homosexuality.
It merely says on article 54 ‘that State shall recognise and protect the family as the natural and fundamental unit of society and the necessary basis of the social order. (2) A person who is eighteen years of age or older has the right to freely choose a spouse of the opposite sex and marry.’