RAPHAEL Nakacinda has submitted that the Constitutional Court was the right forum to hear a petition in which he wants the court to declare Felix Mutati as the legitimate president of the MMD, among other declarations.
But lawyer Jeah Madaika, who is representing Nevers Mumba, has urged the court to dismiss the petition because it was a duplication of the case that was before the High Court.
Nakacinda petitioned the Constitutional Court seeking, among other declarations, that the decision made in May 2016 to usher in new office bearers led by Mutati was legal.
He cited Mumba, MMD national secretary Winnie Zaloumis, Elizabeth Molobeka, Lisa Pasi, Georgina Mutale and Bwalya Lengwe.
When the case came up for hearing of a preliminary issue which Mumba’s lawyer Madaika raised that the petition be dismissed for being an abuse of court process, one of Nakacinda’s lawyers Joseph Jalasi submitted that there would be no other forum for the petitioner to take his grievances if the court agreed with Mumba’s arguments that the petition should be dismissed.
Jalasi told court president Hildah Chibomba who sat with judges Annie Sitali, Mungeni Mulenga, Enock Mulembe and Palan Mulonda, that Mumba’s arguments that the matter before the ConCourt was re-litigation or duplication of the matter before the High Court was incorrect.
He said the petitioner was before the ConCourt because the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court all constantly confirmed that the Constitutional Court was the right court to hear the petition.
Jalasi said the High Court already stated that it had no jurisdiction to handle the matter and so was the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
He asked the court to dismiss the respondent’s application and proceed to hear the matter.
But Madaika insisted that the petition was a duplication of the case that was before the High Court and should therefore be dismissed.
He said when one analyses the contents of the petition before the Constitutional Court and the one before the High Court, it was clear that the two were seeking the same remedy because the gist of the cases was bordering on the MMD convention that was held between May 20 and May 22, 2016 at Mulungushi in Kabwe.
The court reserved ruling to January 25.