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Will ex-President Lungu have constitutional right to contest in 2026? Here’s what we know so far


A Lusaka resident has been granted leave to serve court documents to ex-President Edgar Lungu through an advertisement in a widely circulated newspaper after he accused him of evading service.

Michelo Chizombe, who is also a National Council of Student Unions leader, has petitioned the Constitutional Court to declare Lungu, ineligible to contest future elections.

Read more: Plot thickens on Lungu, as court receives petition to declare ex-President ineligible to contest future elections

Chizombe sought leave of the Concourt to serve originating process to the ex-leader by way of substituted service because both his security personnel and Makebi Zulu Advocates have refused to receive them.

The petitioner’s lawyer, David Ncube, said he had to leave the documents at Mr Lungu’s gate.

“Security personnel refused, and I in turn left the petition,the affidavit verifying facts,the skeleton arguments and the notice of hearing sheduled for October 17,2023 at the gate of his residence.

“That prompt personal service of the Originating process on the first responder has proven difficult as the said first respondent has proved elusive and has actively evaded service,” he said.

Constitutional Court Judge, Palan Mulonda, granted the application and ordered that the adverts must appear on Monday October 23 and Thursday, October 26 ,2023.

“It is hereby ordered that leave be granted to serve originating process and other court documents in this matter onto first respondent, Edgar Lungu, out of time and by substituted service by way of advertising in two newspapers having a wide circulation in Zambia,” he ordered.

The Petitioner has cited Lungu, Electoral Commission of Zambia and the Attorney-General as respondents in the matter.

Chizombe had asked the Court to revisit its ruling by declaration that the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) contravened the Republican constitution when it accepted Lungu’s nomination papers and include him on the ballot.

He further seeks a declaration that the respondent (Lungu) is not eligible to contest a presidential election under the current Constitution as read with the now repealed 1991 Constitution (as amended).

The petitioner has asked the Court to give an interpretation as to whether section 7 and section 2 of Act no. 1 of 2016 had the effect of saving Article 35 of the 1991 Constitution (as amended) in regard to Lungu’s Presidential term between January 25 ,2015 and September 13, 2016.

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