Eight leading NGOs and individual Human rights activists have challenged Chief Justice Irene Mambilima to show cause why Sunday Chanda should not be cited for contempt of court.
On Monday, Chanda authored and published an article insulting a magistrate who ruled that state house PS Dr Simon Miti should be arrested for corruption like Kapoko.
The NGOs argue that since the Supreme Court has set a precedence that whoever questions a court judgment is guilty of contempt, Chanda should also be summoned.
The petition was handed to Mambilina this morning.
Honourable Mrs Irene Chirwa Mambilima
Chief Justice of Zambia
Judiciary of Zambia
August 8, 2018
Dear Your Ladyship,
RE: SUNDAY C CHANDA’S STATEMENT ON THE JUDICIARY AND MAGISTRATE EXNORBIT ZULU
We write to bring to your attention the captioned subject. Following the Supreme Court of Zambia’s recent citing of Chikondi Foundation President, Bishop John H Mambo, and Mr Gregory Chifire for contempt of court for commenting on a court judgment in the matter of Savenda Management Services Vs Stanbic Bank Limited, a matter that had been duly disposed of, we the undersigned civil society organisations and civic actors are of the view that a precedent has been set in which individuals who comment on matters that have been disposed of, or in court, will be cited for contempt of court.
While we, as CSOs, have always been of the view that once a case is disposed of, it is no longer subjudice and therefore those who comment on it are not in contempt of court, we are convinced that the direction the highest court in the land has taken in the Savenda Management Services vs. Stanbic Bank Limited case must be seen to be applied fairly, until clarity on what constitutes contempt of court is achieved.
The statement we bring to your attention attacks the judgment delivered on the Henry Kapoko case by Magistrate Zulu and the Magistrate himself.
In the interest of fair play, we the undersigned civil society organisations do therefore request your office to investigate this statement for possible contempt of court by Sunday C. Chanda, Media Director of the Patriotic Front.
A copy of the said statement authored and published by Mr Sunday C Chanda is hereby enclosed for ease of reference.
On behalf of the undersigned organisations
Yours in the interest of Justice for All.
Laura Miti – Executive Director Alliance for Community Action
Nalucha Nganga – Executive Director Action Aid
Eugene Kabilika – Executive Director Caritas Zambia
Engwase Mwale – Executive Director NGOCC
Lillian Keifer – Executive Director Panos Institute Southern Africa
Lumba Sianga – Executive Director Women for Change
McDonald Chipenzi – Executive Director Gears
Pascal Bwalya – Acting Executive Director ZCSD
Pamela Chisanga – Governance Activist