A CIVIL servant and public officer who wants to contest for a political office must resign two years before that election, according to the National Dialogue Forum. On Monday evening, NDF delegates debated Article 186 of the Constitution but failed to reach consensus pertaining to the period civil servants needed to “cool off” before joining active politics.
Article 186 (1) states that a public officer who seeks election, or is appointed, to a State office shall resign.
On account of failing to reach consensus, Forum co-vice-chairperson Mary Mulenga said: “since we seem not to reach a consensus, it will be subjected to a vote. We ask ECZ to help us.”
Voting, administered by the Electoral Commission of Zambia, took place yesterday afternoon, and results were announced by the returning officer.
“Allow me now to give out the results. I, Anna Mulenga Nkaka, being the returning officer for the National Dialogue Forum, do hereby declare that I have, in accordance with the law, ascertained the result of the poll in the said election of Article 186 (1) and they have been given one year had 13 votes, three years had 16 votes, six months had 29 votes, three months had 48 votes [and] two years had 82 votes,” read Mulenga-Nkaka.
“I further declare that no ballot paper has been rejected as invalid. I therefore declare that the option of two years to be in affirmative by majority members of the National Dialogue Forum this day of 14th May, 2019 and I have signed.”