Dr Ludwig Sondashi v The Attorney General (2000) ZR 123

Image made with thanks to James Sutton & visualwatermark.com

Main Principles in Holding: Ouster Clauses, Justiciability of Matters and the Jurisdiction of the Courts

Introduction

“Secondly, as pointed out by the learned trial Judge, it is a requirement in judicial review that all available remedies must be exhausted before applying for prerogative writs…We, as a court, accept that where the legislature has decided that certain matters should be solely placed in the jurisdiction of the executive, the court has no role to play as such issues contain no legal issues to be resolved.  Further, the question of security is entirely for the executive to decide upon.  Courts are not in a position to know and adjudicate on such issues.”

– Chibesakunda J.S. in delivering judgment

In this case, the Supreme Court (SC) averred that if the Legislature decides that certain issues should solely be for the executive, the Court has no role to play in resolving the matter as they are no legal issues to be resolved.

Ouster Clauses

This concept or statement resonates well with the aspect of ouster clauses and justiciability of a matter. Ouster clauses are clauses that seek to exclude the Court’s power to hear a matter to deal with the Executive. These clauses effectively exclude the Court’s powers. They are often found in Legislation stopping a Court from hearing a matter, however, they have to be drafted in sufficiently clear wording to prevent ambiguity. For instance, in Anisminic v Foreign Compensation Commission [1969] 2 AC 147, the defendants had refused to grant compensation to successors of the appellant’s company as they were not of British origin. A Statutory Instrument provided that the decisions of the Commission were not appealable or could not be questioned in a Court of Law. The Court however, found that the wording of the Delegated Legislation was too ambiguous to effectively oust the jurisdiction of the Court. Another case in which this principle was discussed was R v Medical Appeal Board Ex Parte Gilmore [1947] 1 QB 574, where the board had decided that a worker who had been blinded in both eyes only suffered 20 per cent disability thus enabling him to a limited amount of compensation. The Board’s decision, according to the Legislation that created it, was final and incapable of being resolved or challenged in a Court of Law. It was held that to effectively oust the Court’s jurisdiction, it had to be sufficiently clear that this was the intent of the Legislature.

Justiciability

Another concept that supports the holding of this case, is that of Justiciability. Though not expressly stated or decided by the Legislature, certain decisions that are made by the Executive are not justiciable thus cutting out the court’s jurisdiction. In George Peter Mwanza and Another v The Attorney General (Selected Judgment No. 33 of 2019) , it was stated that justiciability is the ability to have a matter heard where there has been a breach of rights. Thus, where a matter has been impliedly stated or expressly stated to not be justiciable, then there is nothing for the Court to resolve. Examples of non-justiciable matters include, but are not limited to, issues involving:

  1. National Security and;
  2. Prerogative of the President
Made with thanks to Daniel Stub

Jurisdiction

Furthermore, you can also relate the concept of jurisdiction to this statement (quoted above). In Zambia Revenue Authority v Professional Insurance Corporation Zambia (Appeal No. 34 of 2017), it was stated that jurisdiction is the gateway to a remedy and lack of it entails that a matter cannot be tried. Thus, where a decision of the Executive is not subject to the jurisdiction of the Courts, there is no issue for them to resolve.

This concept of the Legislature exempting the Executive from the Court’s Authority is a dangerous one as many bad decisions can go unchecked. The Judgment states that it is a requirement for Judicial Review that ‘all available remedies are exhausted’.  This falls in line with the principle that Judicial Review  must be a remedy of last resort. To be granted leave for Judicial Review, it must shown that the party in question exhausted all other alternatives of seeking redress for the matter. Most of the time, a statute may give a comprehensive process of appealing a decision and it is not until this is done can a decision be amenable to Judicial Review.  In New Plast Industries v Commissioner of Lands and Another (S.C.Z Judgment No. 8 of 2001), it was stated  that where an act gives a procedure to be followed  before Judicial Review can be sought, that procedure should be complied with.

Some Acts may provide that a matter should be heard by a Tribunal before it can be challenged in a Court of Law. Failure to follow this means that leave cannot be granted. Thus, it can concluded that the implication of the holding in the case of Dr Ludwig Sondashi v The Attorney General is that when drafted accordingly, ouster clauses may oust the jurisdiction of the court from hearing or trying decisions of the Executive and that for one to effectively apply for Judicial Review, they must show that they took all alternative steps of dealing with the matter, such as appeals or going before a Tribunal, before they could bring a challenge of Judicial Review against the body in question.

“This post was written by Suwilanje Namumba. Truly you are an inspiration. Much thanks from Vigilante Scholar”

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The Barefooted Lawyer

Lessons on work ethic from Abraham Lincoln

There are a few men who have influenced American political history as the 16th President of the United States, Mr. Abraham Lincoln. His Christ-like patience led America through its bloodiest conflict and prevented its annihilation. Had a lesser man been in his position, there’s no shadow of a doubt that the United States as we know it today would have been relegated to the fallen empires of history. Although his presence in this world was robbed too soon by an assassin’s bullet, his impact, nonetheless, remains undiminished. No wonder thieves attempted to steal his body after his death and ordinary people smeared their handkerchiefs with his blood as a souvenir. I admit that I am a self-proclaimed fanatic of Mr. Lincoln and I owe a lot of my life principles to him. Sometimes when people push me to the edge, I catch myself thinking in the words of Theodore Roosevelt, ‘What would Lincoln have done if he had this problem?’ His life, at least to me, is a source of great strength and encouragement.

American Civil War 1861-1865: Picture adapted from skyminds.net

In my reflections, I often wondered how a person who had less than a year of formal education came to be a lawyer and ultimately President of the United States. The answers revealed a lot. Not only about politics and leadership but also about determination. Although I could talk about so many aspects of the slain President’s life, I will focus only on his impact on work ethic. To put things in simple terms, Abraham Lincoln got the job done in whatever he put his mind to.

Wounded Buffalo

Whether this means it was done successfully or not is another discussion. I would describe his work ethic and determination as that of a wounded buffalo. It wasn’t based on natural talent and skill but on a pure determination to get the job done. Amid heartache and disappointment, he dogged his way through his challenges with incredible courage.

For example, he had to walk for at least three miles just to borrow law books. One schoolmaster had recounted that he had taught more than five thousand students, but Lincoln was the “most studious, diligent, straightforward young man in the pursuit of knowledge and literature” he had ever met. He would study the law for hours and often seemed absorbed in a different world entirely. Eye-witness accounts say that he always used to carry a book in one hand and an ax in the other. After cutting down some trees, he always used to take some time out to read after taking a rest.

Statue in Chicago, Illinois of Barefooted Teenage Abraham reading a book

When I look at how hard lawyers generally have to work to establish their reputations, I never go far in thought before considering him. In Zambia, it is a well-known fact that clearing the Law Practice Qualifications Examinations (LPQE) at the Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE) is no walk in the park. It’s quite tough. However, I believe that the media don’t really appreciate the high standards of professionalism that are expected of a lawyer. In all my research on the topic, I have found that a good legal system depends on what type of lawyers are in it. Historically, this profession was only secluded to royalty and for good reason. Good judgment and rational thinking are a strange combination that most people don’t have. The law is probably the oldest profession in the world and we can even trace its origins in the Biblical book of Genesis. One humorist actually said ‘the devil must have been a lawyer…he made Adam breach the contract he had made with God and ultimately sucked humanity into the mess it is in. Even the devil is described as a prosecutor of the brethren.’

A humorist’s idea of a deal with the devil

Putting the jokes aside, I think the law requires a practitioner to have an incredible work ethic. After all, the more experience you have as a practitioner the better you become at dealing with legal problems. You have to admit that being a lawyer is not as easy as they would want us to think. You are dealing with a profession that is tasked with interpreting documents that were written by someone who is dead or for some good reason, cannot be consulted. Myles Munroe actually said,

‘the reason why they call working as a lawyer ‘practice’ is that that’s exactly what it is: Practice. It needs to be practiced for it to be effective.’

Leadership mentor and enthusiast, dr. myles munroe

Turning to our barefooted lawyer, we could see that Lincoln met these standards quite well.

Another thing that is worthy of note about Lincoln’s work ethic was the compassion he had for his clients. There are not many accounts of Lincoln’s law practice because it often gets shadowed by his political successes. However, Dale Carnegie’s book suggests that he was a very compassionate hard-working lawyer. Dale said, ‘Many of his clients, he said, were as poor as he, and he didn’t have the heart to charge them much. Once a man sent him twenty-five dollars; and Lincoln returned ten, saying he had been too liberal. In another instance, he prevented a swindler from getting hold of ten thousand dollars’ worth of property owned by a demented girl. Lincoln won the case in fifteen minutes. An hour later, his associate, Ward Lamon, came to divide their fee of two hundred and fifty dollars. Lincoln rebuked him sternly. Lamon protested that the fee had been settled in advance, that the girl’s brother was entirely satisfied to pay it. “That may be,” Lincoln retorted, “but I am not satisfied. That money comes out of the pocket of a poor, demented girl; and I would rather starve than swindle her in this manner. You return half this money at least, or I’ll not take a cent of it as my share.”’ In my opinion, this kind of compassion is what really shaped his work ethic. You see, he wasn’t just working to get a salary at the end of the month. Although that was important as well. He really felt that what he did really changed and improved the lives of his clients and the people around him. This compassion actually spilled over into his time in the white house. Most presidents never really feel the need to associate with the commoners or at least struggle to do so because of security reasons. Lincoln, on the other hand, had no such qualms. In a letter addressed to a mother who had lost five of her boys in the civil war, he wrote his condolences in words that could be described as some sort of unconscious poetry. He said,

‘Dear Madam, —

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle.

I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save.

I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,

A. Lincoln’

Letter to Mrs. Bixby: Boston, 21st November, 1864

There are not too many people of prominence who could’ve said that. In fact, the civil war bore on Lincoln a very sorrowful look. He slept little and ate less. His passionate determination to end the war really took a heavy toll on him. Soon enough, some attendants in the White House saw that their President was treading dangerous waters and suggested that he take a vacation. Lincoln responded by saying that a vacation wouldn’t do him any good because he could not run away from his thoughts. Even in the presence of immense sorrow, he still upheld a very strong work ethic and culture. That’s why he said, “Always remember that your resolution to succeed is far more important than any single thing.”

A picture of Lincoln in the White House

So now, what lessons can be learned from his work ethic? Well, as you can imagine, there are several and I will leave that to you to pick the best ones. For me, personally, I draw a lot of strength from his obsessive-like determination to get the job done. The drive to continue moving forward in the presence of great adversity.

By the way, the reason why I called him the barefooted lawyer is because he often walked barefooted while he worked and studied the law. Like I said previously, he always used to be seen with a book in one hand and an ax in the other. This was a habit that was to remain with him all the way up to his days in the White House. Unlike most Presidents that came before him, he particularly didn’t mind walking around barefooted in the White House.

To be honest, I think Lincoln deserves his seat among the immortals of this world. Even today, his life can be a pillar of great strength. To working professionals, his determination can teach a thing or two about work ethic. History is a good judge and the very fact that his life still inspires today shows that the lessons are still fresh. Fresh for application for anyone bold enough to take the challenge and journey of self-improvement.

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE IN ZAMBIA?

What’s the big deal?

Earlier this year, before the Corona Virus pandemic was on the lips of every Zambian, there was a video of a prominent prophet who alleged that the current Zambian government had used his ‘Juju’ to win the elections.  He said that he regretted helping them win because they had become arrogant and were using his ‘powers’ to oppress the people. Then, he went on to give a 20-day ultimatum to every person in the government who had used his ‘stuff’ to give it back or else suffer the penalty of death. I actually watched the warning video myself and I could tell you that it was as funny as it was shocking; Newspapers around the country picked up on the story and went crazy. It was as if one man had held an entire country ransom and its government at the mercy of his self-proclaimed ‘supernatural powers’.

Prophet Andrew, commonly known as Seer 1. This is the dude that held the government ransom.

Now, for all of you who didn’t know, Zambia has a legally instituted Ministry of Religious Affairs… (yep, you heard me right, that wasn’t a typo). And its task is to…well, regulate religious affairs in the country. At this point, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist for you to know that Zambia is probably the most religiously- conservative country in sub-Saharan Africa. Whether that’s a good thing or not depends on what the color of your toothbrush is. So, anyway, the guy’s allegations, obviously, could not go unanswered. The minister of Religious Affairs addressed and condemned his ‘impassioned’ rhetoric and what was his response? He threatened her that if he wanted, he could visit her at night (and not physically by the way) and make her life very difficult. Now, let’s pause right there, what are we talking about here? This is our government addressing a religious issue while millions upon millions of our countrymen suffer from starvation! Do we even need a Ministry of Religious Affairs? Don’t get me wrong, I am a Christian and I believe that God should have a say in the leadership of a country but this? No way this can help us …

The way forward?

A question that has strongly been running through my mind is: should the country have a separation of church and state? (This is where I start to sound like homework). It is vital to mention that before the Constitutional Amendment of 1996, Zambia subscribed to Humanism and didn’t particularly adopt any particular religion for the entire country. In fact, the Mwanakatwe commission didn’t like the idea of Zambia being declared a Christian nation. Politically speaking, this is starting to look bad for me. I bet some high-spirited Christians would view me as nothing short of another heathen drinking the Western world’s Bootleg. But that’s not the case at all.

Anyway, by separation of Church and State, what do we mean by that you might ask? What we mean is that should the country make a law that puts up a wall between government business and religious business just like France or the United States of America for example.

I was surprised to find that this thought is actually very old. The disagreements between Pope Gregory and Emperor Henry IV in the 12th century marked the very beginning of the idea. Over the centuries, as democracies evolved alongside secularism, governments incorporated the idea into their laws. One such government was the United States of America, which we will now use as a case example.

I am not a fan of some American ideologies but I think they were unto something on this one. After the American Revolution, which spanned from 1775 to 1783, most of the states’ constitutions provided for freedom of conscience and separation of church and state. But the Federal Constitution which was drawn up in 1787, had no such provisions, which caused many states to go against its ratification. So, to fix this problem, the first congress of the United States came up with amendments, which later on became the American Bill of Rights. You see, the framers of that constitution wanted a secular state which wasn’t based on any particular religion. So, contrary to popular belief in Zambia, the United States of America has never been a Christian nation.

The first amendment of the U.S. Constitution reads:

“Congress shall make no law, respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;”

1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution

The first part of this sentence is known as the Establishment Clause while the second is known as the Free Exercise Clause. The Establishment Clause prohibits Congress from making any law that legally establishes any religion. While the Free Exercise Clause prohibits Congress from making a law that legally stops the practice or exercise of any religion. These provisions sometimes conflict with each other and that was the whole plot or issue in the movie God’s Not Dead 2 (please see it, it’s a nice movie).

To get more clarity, you should watch

An example of an issue that may arise is: should the American government tax Churches? If they do, doesn’t that mean that they violate a Church’s right to free exercise? And if they don’t, does that mean that they are respecting an establishment of religion? Views have been diverse and I think it would be out of topic to consider this any further.

Final thoughts

So, coming back to my country, I think that Zambia should institutionalize a separation of church and state. If such a separation was made, I highly doubt we would have drama like the one I alluded to earlier. To add a little bit more, it is no secret that politicians in our country use Christianity to get political leverage and votes. Its almost like, ‘since I believe in God and I am a God-fearing person, I have every right to do as I please.’ What surprises me is how we can say we are a Christian nation with so much rampant corruption? I think it’s deceptive. We have two options, either we institutionalize separation of church and state or we make strict laws that hold the leaders directly responsible and answerable to the people. At the current pace we are moving, I think it’s easier to make the former than the latter. However, the consequences of the separation of church and state in Zambia would be grave. It means that a law like section 158 of the Penal Code Act of Zambia, which prohibits homosexuality would lose its saltiness and come close to amendment or even complete repeal. Such a result, I agree, would be unintended and would meet with strong opposition from various people in the country. Anyway, I had explained my position on Homosexuality in a previous post, so I won’t delve into the gory details. Article 5 of Constitutional Bill No.10 of 2019 clearly shows an intention to institutionalize Christianity throughout the state. It reads,

“Article 8 of the Constitution is amended by the deletion of paragraph (a) and the substitution therefor of the following paragraph:

(a) Christian morality and ethics;”

Article 5 of Zambian Constitutional Bill No.10 of 2019

As a Christian, I believe this is a good thing but I also lament the abuse that would follow by politicians. If we are to follow this way, we must ensure that all of the Christian values are adhered to. This means that there should be no tolerance for corruption, impunity and, injustice. For these are not only democratic principles but they are also Christian values as well. If we cannot do that, then a separation of church and state would be the way to go about it.

To conclude, I believe the separation of church and state can help clean the political process in our country and keep politics from the church as well as the church from politics. As Jesus Christ himself once said, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and give to God what is God’s.”

CRIMINALIZATION OF HOMOSEXUALITY IN ZAMBIA

Whats the problem?

The criminalization of homosexuality in Zambia engenders ambivalent feelings in leftist organizations in the western world. Quite recently, the United States ambassador to Zambia, Daniel L. Foote, criticized the Zambian government for allowing anti-homosexual laws to reign in the country while rampant government corruption went unattended to. You can follow the story up on https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2019/12/26/us-ambassador-zambia-defended-jailed-gay-couple-that-was-just-beginning/  or

The criticism was brought forth because of a High Court ruling which imprisoned a gay couple to 15 years. While, I agree with ambassador Foote and the American people that there’s something inherently wrong with funding the Zambian government with millions of dollars each year only to be wasted through corruption, my position, however, differs on the Laws of the Country relating to gay rights. I always say that the Laws of a country are subject to the people it governs. If a law is oppressive, chances are that it will ultimately meet a timely end. But if not, it will continue to serve the purpose to which it was made. For example, slavery laws were known to be oppressive and eventually died out in the 19th century. Therefore, what makes a good law is not only the support it receives from the state, but more so, from the people it governs as well. Coming to anti-homosexual laws in Zambia, we observe that the mass of Zambian society finds the act of homosexuality to be utterly unnatural. Out of all the 72 tribes present in the Country, there’s not one that endorses or supports homosexuality as a matter of public policy. To put icing on the cake, Zambia is a Christian nation which upholds Christian values. So, you can see this combination strongly at work in its laws. What is hard for the average Zambian to grasp is how a country could claim to be Christian and at the same time support unchristian practices. It looks to be a paradox in his mind. To top it off, the bible’s stance on homosexuality is quite clear. In Romans 1:26-27 it says

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error

New International Version (N.I.V) Bible

So, therefore, it’s easy for us to see how the legislature could come up with section 158 of the Penal Code Act of Zambia which reads,

158. (1) Any male who, whether in public or private, commits any act of gross indecency with a male child or person, or procures a male child or person to commit any act of gross indecency with him, or attempts to procure the commission of any such act by any male person with himself or with another male child or person, whether in public or private, commits a felony and is liable, upon conviction, to imprisonment for a term of not less than seven years and not exceeding fourteen years.

(2) Any female who, whether in public or private, commits any act of gross indecency with a female child or person, or procures a female child or person to commit any act of gross indecency with her, or attempts to procure the commission of any such act by any female person with himself or with another female child or person, whether in public or private, commits a felony and is liable, upon conviction, to imprisonment for a term of not less than seven years and not exceeding fourteen years.

(3) A child who, whether in public or private, commits any act of gross indecency with another child  of the same sex or attempts to procure the commission of any such act by any person with the child’s self or with another child or person of the same sex, whether in public or private, commits an offence and is liable, to such community service or counseling as the court may determine in the best interests of the child.

The preamble of the Zambian constitution also states that,

“WE, THE PEOPLE OF ZAMBIA:

ACKNOWLEDGE the supremacy of God Almighty;

DECLARE the Republic a Christian Nation while upholding a

person’s right to freedom of conscience, belief or religion”

Preamble of the Zambian Constitution

So, just as I explained previously, the Laws of a Country are always subject to its people. If the people of Zambia’s Christian beliefs are against homosexuality, I think its best to respect them as they stand.

The situation in Zambia is very much similar to that in the Bahamas. The Bahamian Constitution declares in its preamble that the country should have “an abiding respect for Christian values and the rule of law.” However, in recent years, the Bahamas has given in into western pressure and has set itself on a lengthy campaign for support of gay rights in its laws. Some Christian citizens in the small island, like the late prominent preacher, Dr. Myles Munroe, were in strong opposition with the move…as the video below shows.

Dr. Myles Munroe Speaking on Homosexuality in the Bahamas.

In my recent research on the subject, I have heard some advocates for gay rights compare their struggle to that of slavery; somehow comparing their plight with that of the horrors of slavery. My opinion is that I think that notion is quite deceptive. Slavery was discriminatory because it judged a person based on what he was born with, that is, the color of his skin. Which he really had no choice over. Homosexuality on the other hand, is not something someone is born with, but rather, something that they choose to be voluntarily. If we could say that people are born homosexual, then it would make sense to assert that anti-homosexual laws in Zambia are oppressive. But as the state of things are, no one can prove that they were born homosexual.

So, in conclusion, anti- homosexual laws in Zambia exist to protect national identity through the enforcement of Christian values. I hope this little ‘treatise’ makes some viable sense to some foreigners who might’ve been wondering as to why the arm of the Law in Zambia is so heavy against homosexuals. As Vigilante Scholars, our views are dependent on the culture we were raised in. I understand that very well. But, however, when it comes to law making and procedure, I don’t think there’s a universal solution for us all. We must all stick to what our cultures teach to properly make a law that will serve a particular society in question. There’s no doubt in Zambia that anti-homosexual laws serve their purpose to validate national identity and to some degree, national unity. Therefore, it should suffice to say that such laws will continue to be a part of the nation’s cultural fabric and values.

DEVOLUTION IN ZAMBIA: A CONSTITUTIONAL PERSPECTIVE

The Constitution of the Republic of Zambia is what is termed by scholars as Unitary. What that means is that its system of governance is centralized and all decisions in effect come from the President and his cabinet. In my few years of law school, I have heard some views saying that the country would do better if it changed to a federal system. By definition, a federal-state is one in which governmental power is not centralized in one entity. But rather it is shared among the semi-autonomous states with a governor as the leader of that state. Examples of federal states are Nigeria, India and of course, the United States of America (I mean, it’s in the name, right?)

States in Nigeria

In an article by the Lusaka Times dated 4th March 2012, Wynter Kabimba remarked that a federal system of government in Zambia wouldn’t work. He cited his reason to be that the population of Zambia is just too small for a federal state. He made his remarks to a response made by Zambia Direct Democracy president, Edwin Sakala, who had called on the government of the day to consider introducing a Federal system of governance. Mr. Sakala’s bone to pick was that under the current system of governance, government resources are not well spread out.

Come to think of it, there is some truth to Mr. Sakala’s line of thinking. However, I agree with Mr. Kabimba when he said that it would be quite an enormous task for the country to change to a federal state. First and foremost, this would mean that the constitution has to be amended (I know right? More drama…) to provide for a federal government and the removal of a devolved system. A devolved system of government is the current type of government system that Zambia has. By definition, ‘it is the delegation by the Central Government to a regional authority of legislative or executive function (or both) relating to domestic issues within the system.’ That’s according to the learned author Mulenga Besa.

In our current Constitution, the system is introduced in Article 147 (1), which says that “The management and administration of the political, social, legal and economic affairs of the State shall be devolved from the national government level to the local government level.”

Although we do have this provision, it is most unfortunate that attention has been paid more to the central government than the local government. It is true that perhaps we cannot afford a change of a complete system of government. But, I think leaders should put more power to the people by empowering the local government.

I was born and raised in Chachacha in the city of Kitwe on the Copperbelt Province of Zambia and during my time here, I have never heard of a councillor or mayor that is, call a meeting when there’s a crisis like an unanticipated shortage of water for a week. People just have to figure out what they will do.  Isn’t that odd?…

Problems like this are rampant on the copperbelt

 It really doesn’t reflect the principles of democracy. There’s no system in place for lodging complaints either and even if they are put forth, it is with a doubtful spirit that I think they would go far.

We shouldn’t blame the people we put in power for this. I think we should blame ourselves. We should really start holding the people we put in office accountable because they are our servants. This principle is as old as democracy itself.

So, in conclusion, I think the people of Zambia should start participating more in the running of this country. Not through politics per se but through accountability and objectivity. For that is indispensable to democracy and the Vigilante Scholar.

KACHASU V THE ATTORNEY GENERAL: Patriotism & Law in Zambia

In a democratic society where the rule of Law should abound, it becomes of utmost importance for a people of a country to be patriotic. A patriot is defined by Encarta dictionaries as “A proud supporter or defender of his country and its way of life.” Now, ask any Chinese man to what he thinks the greatest nation on earth is; chances are that he would probably say China. The same goes for the Americans, Japanese and people from the United Kingdom. But think about it. Walk the street today and ask any Zambian to what he thinks the greatest Nation on earth is and I can bet he would say such and such a country…

Now that’s Patriotism

As for me, unequivocally and with every fiber of my being, I believe Zambia is the greatest Nation on earth. Doesn’t matter how powerful and influential the rest of the Nations are, that’s my conviction. So, what does this have to do with anything related to the Law? Well, unlike Physics, Chemistry or Mathematics, the Law is a creation of the people it governs. In an Islamic state, chances are that you would have Islamic Law. In a French state, chances are that you would have French law. In a yoyo people state, chances are that you would have yoyo people law. Do you see the pattern here?

So, why is it that the average person in Zambia is so unconcerned about the Law that governs him? Well, there are multiple reasons: Language Barriers, Expensive Legal fees, Misconceptions and the biggest of them all, Lack of Patriotism. We simply don’t love our country enough.

Now, let us look at the case of Kachusa v The Attorney General as an example. This was a case of a young girl who refused to salute to the National flag because she was a Jehovah’s Witness…