When the judiciary is destabilized, societal equilibrium is dislodged and rule of law is seriously endangered. The jack-boot of ‘might’, exercised by the executive may prevail by sheer intimidation, but the ephemeral gains will wreak permanent damage beyond the political life of the party in power.
It is therefore absolute folly and unacceptable for a Government to resort to terminological inexactitudes, or lies to justify wrong doing especially on public matters that have a bearing on the supreme law of the land- the constitution.
It has been suggested that’ “where law is disrespected, the populace would go astray and whenever it is subjudicated, anarchy becomes enthroned; at any given situation where law can no longer tame, criminals are born, bred and raised to the positions of leadership in every facet of national life; when law becomes the servant, it automatically metamorphoses to an endangered specie. This scenario is a prelude to what sociologists describe as a state of anomie.”
To suggest that former President Rupiah Banda is under travel embargo because of cases for which he has not yet been arrested does not make sense. You can not abrogate constitutional right on account of speculation.
We might as well impose a travel embargoes on all those authorities involved in the highly corrupt Trafigura oil procurement contract because those responsible will most certainly be prosecuted for procuring overpriced oil thereby stealing from poor Zambians to give to the rich.
That Minister of Home Affairs Edgar Lungu could advance such a defective excuse for blocking RB’s travel is a very sad reflection of Government desperation to legitimize wrong doing.
The truth of the matter is that this Government does not have the discipline to observe the law by respecting judicial decisions.
If there were any doubts these are no more. The executive has declared a war on the Judiciary and they have done so in the most blatant manner possible.
At first the excuse by then Acting President was that former President Rupiah Banda had not processed his request to travel properly through the Government system.
It however transpired that in fact the invitation from the African Union had been channeled through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who in fact had brought it to his attention.
But he did not travel.
More recently the excuse was that RB was a flight risk and could not therefore be allowed to travel.
But High Court Judge Jane Kabuka quickly dismissed this notion when she quite confidently ruled that he was no such risk and that as a former President appropriate regard should be given to him.
And now the excuse is that in fact RB is under a general travel embargo because the investigative wings were concerned that he might interfere or indeed sabotage investigations and possibly tamper with evidence in cases where he was yet to be arrested.
This is a new one, but totally disingenuous.