THE Ministry of Home Affairs has cancelled the registration of Democratic Party.
But the Democratic Party says it will appeal the government’s decision to deregister it.
In a letter dated June 6, 2018 addressed to Democratic Party (DP) secretary general, Chief Registrar of Societies Thandiwe Mhende stated that following DP’s inability to address the issue of why their society should not be cancelled, the Registrar of Societies had invoked the provisions of the societies Act, Cap 119 of the Laws of Zambia to have their registration cancelled under Section 13(2)(d).
“Reference is made to the above captioned matter and your letter dated June 4, 2018, as response to the letter which this office addressed to the Democratic Party dated May 23, 2018. You may wish to note that, the correspondence of May 23, 2018 to yourselves was a notification of intension to cancel your registration for being a non-existent society. The same letter invited your party to show cause why your society’s registration should not be cancelled. I have humbly noted with dismay that your response to the notification of intention to cancel your registration has diverted from addressing the issue of why this office should not proceed to cancel your registration for non-existence,” Mhende stated.
“Additionally, you may wish to take note that Registrar of Societies has observed with dismay that your letter carried issues involving third parties that are not party to the concerns raised to have the registration of your society cancelled. For the record, I wish to state that the allegations raised in your letter are unfortunate as this department is an independent and professional body with the mandate obtained purely from the Societies Act Cap 119 of the Laws of Zambia. However, following your inability to address the issue of why your society should not be cancelled, I therefore, invoke the provisions of the Societies Act, Cap 119 of the Laws of Zambia to have your registration cancelled under Section 13(2)(d).”
She conveyed the Notice of Cancellation of Democratic Party’s registration as provided for under Rule 10 of the Societies Rules.
“Kindly find enclosed a Notice of Cancellation of Registration (Form S.O.6,” stated Mhende.
However, Democratic Party spokesperson Judith Kabemba said the party would take the matter to court.
“We have also received that letter and actually we are not shocked, neither are we surprised that the chief registrar has gone ahead to deregister our party. The moment they sent us a letter indicating their intentions, we knew exactly what we were up against. We are aware that those decisions unfortunately are not decisions that are being made by her because when you look at that matter, legally and ethically, the Registrar of Societies has no ground whatsoever that warrants them to deregister the DP because the case they are claiming we have against them is actually a finable case. For them to take the route of deregistering the party is clear that Mrs. Mhende is working under pressure because of the hand that is behind her. This decision is not going to derail us and it will not disturb our goal because the Zambian people want leadership,” said Kabemba.
“Let it also be on record that the whole basis of this deregistration, according to what we know, is because corrupt people in the PF are scared of honourable Harry Kalaba and they want to deprive the Zambian people of the leadership that Hon Kalaba is supposed to give by deregistering the DP. The PF should know that their days in office are numbered. They should also know that posterity will judge them. It is unfortunate that our country has deteriorated to such levels where the ruling party has resorted to intimidation, violence, and they are making sure that they fix all those perceived to be their competitors.”
The Registrar of Societies had earlier refused to register a party linked to Kalaba, the former foreign affairs minister.
Kalaba has in the past months been in talks with the DP to take over its leadership and be the party’s presidential candidate in 2021.