State House is today (Friday) morning making arrangement to try and force sick president Michael Sata to swear in some constitutional office holders who have been waiting to be sworn in for close to two months.
On three occasions, Sata has failed to swear in new Attorney General Musa Mwenya, Solicitor General Abraham Mwansa and Supreme Court Judge Mumba Malila despite their going to State House to be sworn in. They ended up waiting in the lobby just to be told that the ceremony has been postponed.
On July 16, State House spokesperson George Chellah attempted to deceive Zambians through another old picture that Musa Mwenya had been sworn-in, but quickly pulled it down when alert citizens reminded him that the picture was when Mwenya was sworn-in as Solicitor General.
In the face book picture posted that day and later pulled down, there were personalities such as late Information Minister Kennedy Sakeni and people wondered whether Sakeni he had resurrected to attend the swearing-in ceremony.
If Sata manages to swear in these officers today, it will be big news on PF controlled media that ‘Sata swears in Attorney General’.
Highly placed sources within the PF say the president’s failure to swear-in newly ratified Attorney General Musa Mwenya, Solicitor General Abraham Mwansa and Supreme Court Judge Mumba Malila is creating another constitutional crisis.
Sources say there are currently a number of government contracts that cannot be executed without the input, clearance, or legal opinion by the Attorney General’s chambers.
The problem has been so huge that deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Mukonde Lungu even tried to mislead the country that Musa Mwenye cannot start performing the functions of Arttoney General before he takes the Oath of Allegiance. But People’s Party (PP) president Mike Mulongoti has said that is not possible.
Mr Mulongoti, a former minister and qualified lawyer said Mr Mwenye needed a formal appointment letter which is only given at the point of being sworn in to begin functioning as the Attorney General.
And the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) has said it is researching how Mr Mwenye could be asked to start performing the functions of the office of the Attorney General before taking Oath of Allegiance.
LAZ vice-president Linda Kasonde said LAZ was not going to issue an immediate statement until after the research on whether Mr Mwenye could substantively perform his functions before taking Oath of Allegiance.
“We are researching the matter and we are only going to issue a comprehensive statement after the research. For now, we are not going to say anything,’ Ms Kasonde said.
Sata has not been seen in public or heard say anything for more than one month now. Last week some still photos of president Sata were circulated by State House showing him near a plane and hospital bed in South Africa.