LUSAKA lawyer John Sangwa has asked the High Court to stay proceedings in a matter in which he petitioned the court to declare that judge Sunday Nkonde breached the Constitution when he summoned him to answer contempt of court charges.
According to an affidavit in support of an order for stay of proceedings filed in court, Sangwa wants the court to stay proceedings in the matter pending the outcome of the appeal he lodged in the Court of Appeal against the court’s ruling in which he was granted leave to amend the petition on or before September 14.
He stated that he verily believes the outcome of the appeal would have a bearing on the proceedings.
“I also verily believe that the appeal will be rendered nugatory if these proceedings are not stayed pending the hearing and determination of the appeal,” Sangwa stated.
He stated that on June 11, he filed a petition seeking, among others, a declaration that the summons to him issued by judge Nkonde dated June 1 was ultra vires Article 18 and 20 of the Constitution.
Sangwa stated that judge Nkonde on June 21, through his lawyers, filed a notice to raise preliminary issues on various points of law and sought to dismiss the petition.
He stated that judge Nkonde’s application, which he vehemently opposed was heard on July 23.
“On 29th August, the court delivered its ruling wherein he was granted leave to amend the petition on or before 14th September,” Sangwa said. ” Being dissatisfied with the said ruling, I did on 11 September 2018 lodge an appeal to the Court of Appeal raising various grounds.”
In objecting to judge Nkonde’s notice to raise preliminary issues, Sangwa had submitted that the judge could not plead immunity in a petition of fundamental human rights and freedoms because the Constitution binds every person in Zambia, including a High Court judge and the Republican President.
Sangwa petitioned the court to declare that judge Nkonde breached the Constitution when he summoned him to answer contempt of court charges.
He also sought an interpretation on whether a High Court judge could review an injunction or set aside the decision of another High Court judge.
Judge Nkonde contended that he could not be sued in his personal capacity as he was an agent of the State.
Judge Nkonde also submitted that the right person to have been sued was the Attorney General and not him.