CAROLINE KALOMBE, Lusaka
PATRIOTIC Front (PF) secretary general Davis Mwila (below) has asked the High Court to dismiss a case in which Roan Member of Parliament Chishimba Kambwili is challenging his expulsion from the ruling party.
Mr Kambwili is challenging his expulsion from the PF, saying it was wrongful, illegal, null and void, and that his rights under the party constitution were infringed upon as he was not accorded an opportunity to answer the charges. Summons to set aside the originating process, and notice to raise preliminary issues by Mr Mwila, state whether a constitutional challenge of expulsion from a political party can be commenced by writ of summons. Mr Mwila contends that the writ of summons is irregular as Mr Kambwili has sued through a country advocate as principal advocate who did not add the name, firm or place of business, and email address of the agent. It was also argued that the said writ is not endorsed with Mr Kambwili’s full address in terms of the amended High Court rules as only Mr Kambwili’s lawyer’s address was provided. Mr Kambwili contends that on July 22, 2017, a meeting was called by the central committee which was held at State House. He submits that during the meeting, there was on the agenda a report of the disciplinary committee on a matter involving former Copperbelt Minister Mwenya Musenge which has nothing to do with his disciplinary case. Mr Kambwili argues that he was not given any charges as provided for under the PF constitution, and that he was not given the minimum time as stipulated under the party’s disciplinary procedure to exculpate himself. Mr Kambwili says the decision to expel him from the PF has not been communicated to him in person, and that he only saw a story in the Sunday Mail of July 23, 2017. He wants the court to declare that the decision to expel him from PF was wrongful, illegal, null and void, and that his rights were infringed upon. Mr Kambwili also wants the court to order that the PF central committee could not be the complainant or accuser and judge in its own case against him.