Now judiciary threatens citizens calling for acting Chief Justice to resign

The Judiciary has threatened to institute contempt of court proceedings against persons issuing what it termed as unwarranted attacks on the Supreme Court Bench.
Acting Registrar and Director of court Operations Maka Chilombo Phiri in a statement issued to to the media said this in order to preserve the integrity and dignity of the Courts of Law and its officers.
She issued the statement in view of the growing rejection of and calls for acting Chief Justice Lombe Chibesakunda to resign because she is too old for her office at parliament has refused to ratify her appointment.

But Maka Chilombo Phiri said  while the Judiciary is not immune from criticism,  it is concerned with the growing trend of personal assault on individual Judges who are not in a position to defend themselves, as opposed to attacking the substance and content of the Judgments in question.

She said the Judiciary has noted with deep concern the incessant attacks n the Supreme Court of Zambia following the outcome of election petitions arising out of the 2011 general election.

Mrs Phiri explains that in every case whether election petitions of other cases, the Supreme Court sits as a panel of any three,five,or seven or nine Judges,who all give their own opinions on every appeal based on the facts as presented and that the law, and the majority decision takes the day.

She further states that each judgment of the Supreme Court represents collective wisdom of every Judge of the Supreme Court and that ultimately the decision of the three, five or seven or nine Judges represents the decision of the entire Supreme Court.

Mrs Phiri says it is therefore, unfair for anyone to single out the acting Chief Justice as being solely responsible for the outcome of any judgment of the Supreme Court.

She added that the acting Chief Justice like any other Judge does not sit on all panels, and that even when she does sit on any such panel, she sits as a Judge of the Supreme Court expressing her opinion based on facts and the law.

Mrs Phiri said the Judiciary shall insist on and accept only those criticisms being based on the substance of the judgments and not on personalities.

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