Lungu’s threats to declare State of Emergency disturbs CISCA


Civil Society Constitution Agenda (CiSCA) says threats by President Edgar Lungu to declare a state of emergency are disturbing.

CiSCA mobilizing committee Chairperson Nicholas Phiri has reminded President Lungu that beating or corporal punishment by a public officer has been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

Mr. Phiri has referred to the case of Banda vs the People of 1999 in which the Court ruled that beating or corporal punishment is inconsistent with Article 15 of the Bill of Rights.

Speaking at a media briefing in Lusaka today, Mr. Phiri said that Article 15 of the Bill of Rights is therefore non-derogable.

He says this also means that such a provision of the Republican Constitution cannot in this case be suspended even in an event of a state of emergency being declared in Zambia.

Mr Phiri says the protection of people from inhuman treatment is also reaffirmed in article 16 of the convention on the elimination of Torture, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment.

And Mr. Phiri says CiSCA has now established that the PF government is full of inconsistencies, incoherent and incorrect statements when it comes to upholding of national values.

Mr. Phiri says they have particularly observed that in his recent public utterances, President Edgar Lungu has contradicted himself with what he said in his State of the Nation address to Parliament.

He has cited President Lungu’s recent statement that there is no need for the ruling PF to dialogue with the opposition UPND after the August  2016 general elections, as one such utterance that goes against his speech to foster national unity.