By Laura Miti.
My Questions for Ms Nawakwi
Yesterday, FDD President, Edith Nawakwi was quoted as saying she supports Bill 10’s proposal that Parliament not dissolve ahead of elections. She supports that provision because MPs who have loans are disadvantaged when they lose 3 months of their term🤔.
Her other reason for supporting the Bill is the 30 day presidential election petition.
So we have heard what Ms Nawakwi likes about the Constitutional Ammendment Bill 10. Now, I would so love for her to apply her very astute mind to the following provisions of the Bill that are frightening some of us and then please share her views on them:
1. The provision that removes the number of elected and nominated MPs from the Constituion thus allowing a ruling party to increase its numbers, almost at will, via a simple vote and, by extension, give itself the 2/3 majority required to amend the constitution, again at will.
2.The removal of Bank of Zambia’s authority to issue currency thus allowing Cabinet to print money. The attendant removal of the Central Bank’s supervisory authority over commercial banks surely introducing anarchy in the banking sector.
3. The power given to random quasi judicial bodies (like bailiffs) to declare a candidate a non-legal person and prevent them from contesting an election😳.
4.The power given to the President to declare/divide districts and provinces as s/he chooses without Parliamentary authority.
5 The removal of the clause that vests power not categorically provided for in the constitution in the people of Zambia and giving it to the Constitutional Court.
6. Removal of Parliament oversight of debt contraction and international treaties at a time when we are drowning in debt recklessly aquired by government despite multiple loud warnings.
7. The bizarre coalition government clause that allows an individual to negotiate their way into State House thus taking the away the right of Zambians to unequivocally choose their own President.
8. The return of limitless Deputy Ministers that Zambians have categorically rejected.
9. The weakening of the office of the Auditor General by removing its security of tenure.
10. The removal of the number of Cabinet Ministers allowing for as bloated a Cabinet as suits a President.
11. The messing with traditional authority.
13. That the Bill provides that election of MPs will be overseen by Article 170 then deletes article 170🙆🏽♀️.
12. The fact that majority of the provisions on this list were not in the NDF resolutions as announced to the public by Chairperson, Patrick Chisanga. That just this fact fundamentally abrogates the Act under which the NDF sat.
My final question to Ms Nawakwi is – would you like a constituiton with these provisions to be in the hands of a President you did not support? Whose good will you did not trust? Do you think this constitution would protect Zambians and Zambia’s democracy against the whims of whoever happened to be in State House whether saint, devil or something in between? Isn’t that why citizens give themselves a constitution – to ensure that the people do not have to rely on the chance that those in power are kindly, benevolent beings?
Don’t we write laws knowing that sometimes a hyena enters the village compound and the chickens should, in that event, be protected by an impenetrable chicken run🤷🏽♀️.