FROM: THE HON. SECRETARY
TO: ALL LEGAL PRACTITIONERS
DATE: THURSDAY, 9TH MAY 2013
SUBJECT: APPOINTMENT OF STATE COUNSEL
We wish to draw the attention of members and the general public to the law regarding the appointment of State Counsel. Section 17 of the Legal Practitioner’s Act provides the procedure for the appointment as follows:
17. (1) Any practitioner wishing the rank and dignity of a State Counsel for Zambia to be conferred upon him shall submit his application, accompanied by the recommendation of two State Counsel, in that behalf to the Attorney-General.
(2) On receiving such an application, the Attorney-General shall, after consultation with the Chief Justice and the (Law) Association (of Zambia), make such recommendation thereon to the President as he thinks fit, and the President may, after taking such recommendation into consideration, in his discretion, either reject the application or, subject to the other provisions of this Act, appoint, by Letters Patent under the Seal of the Republic, the applicant a State Counsel for Zambia.
The Council of the Law Association of Zambia has taken the position that should the Association, during the consultation process, express an opinion that a Practitioner should not be granted the Honour and dignity of State Counsel, but the said Practitioner is nevertheless granted such honour and dignity then the Association will send a notification to the membership and the public as to why the Association did not see it fit to recommend the appointment. This will apply also to those appointed without following the procedure stipulated above. The Association will reserve its rights in all respects pertaining to such appointments.
It is the position of the LAZ that State Counsel must command respect within the profession and as such, such honour must be granted on merit and not due to any other considerations. This decision is meant to preserve and protect the profession and the honour and rank of State Counsel.