The case in which UPND leaders Hakainde Hichilema and Geoffrey Mwamba have asked the High Court to determine whether their rights to be heard were breached by the constitutional Court has failed to take off because the judge was not aware of the date.
Meanwhile, HH and GBM have lodged papers asking the same judge Mwila Chitabo to hand over the case to a neutral judge. (If there is one in Zambia)
Judge Chitabo says he will hear the case tomorrow.
This is in a matter in which HH and GBM are seeking the interpretation of whether the 14 days computation of time are in breach of the right to be heard.
The constitutional Court refused to hear the presidential petition on grounds that the 14 days in which it should have lapsed. So the court did not state who won the elections.
Attorney General Kalaluka asks the high court to throw out the UPND case on account of jurisdiction arguing that the matter before judge chitabo was of a constitutional nature and thus be thrown out.
But According to UPND lawyers, kalaluka overlooked article 28 which vests powers into the high court to hear any allegation of breach of fundamental rights and freedoms.
In short, the high court has powers to hear issues relating to the bill of rights which includes the right to be heard.
Judge Chitabo previously misconducted himself by being a prosecutor and at the time a judge when he condemned UPND supporters who clashed with police at the court even when no matter of that nature was before him as per law.
He became an investigator, an act that amounts to judicial misconduct as Zambia’s justice system is adversarial( court does not move itself).
On the above premise , HH and GBM wrote the chief justice to have a matter heard before another judge.
It is now clear that if all Zambians remain mute, this immoral and corrupt judge will continue misbehaving at the expense of justice.
HH and GBM have since filed a notice of motion arising from their earlier letter to have Judge chitabo stay away from hearing the matter and that the matter be transferred to another judge.