5 February 2013

Zambia: Sakeni Slams Saunders Over Impeachment Calls

CHIEF Government spokesperson Kennedy Sakeni has described as highly irresponsible for political activist Dante Saunders to call for the impeachment of President Michael Sata.

Mr Sakeni said in reaction to a news article in one of the daily tabloids that the calls by Mr Saunders were misplaced.

"The call is shallow, unresearched and unfounded as there is no appointment that the President has made in the office of the Chief Justice.

"In any case, constitutional appointments by the President, including that of the Chief Justice, are subject to rigorous scrutiny by relevant oversight institutions, including Parliament," Mr Sakeni said.

Mr Saunders was quoted as saying it was unlawful for the President to appoint Ms Justice Lombe Chibesakunda as Chief Justice arguing that she had reached retirement age.

Mr Sakeni, who is Information and Broadcasting Services Minister, said in a statement in Lusaka yesterday that the calls by Mr Saunders did not arise as there were adequate safeguards in the appointment of Constitutional office bearers.

"Mr Saunders should desist from dwelling on speculations and displaying his ignorance on issues he least understands," he said.

He also said Government took exception to Mr Saunders' allegation that Government wanted to use the Judiciary and law enforcement wings to fix its perceived political opponents.

"The Government, therefore, does not influence the operations of the Judiciary because we believe in a professional and independent Judiciary as seen in the fact that all suspects in the ongoing corruption and abuse of authority cases are enjoying their full rights," Mr Sakeni said.

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