Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba should with immediate effect resign his position and if he does not have the moral conscience and integrity to do so, President Michael Sata should fire him so that he could face the Tribunal that has been set up to investigate his abuse of authority and office, MMD president Nevers Mumba has said.
And Dr Mumba has said that the refusal by the Acting Deputy Chief Justice to extend her contract was a message to Justice Lombe Chibesakunda who is the controversial Acting Chief Justice that time has come for her to save the judiciary from completely losing its integrity and trust of the people.
Dr Mumba said following the establishment of the Tribunal to investigate Kabimba by the Acting Chief Justice Lombe Chibesakunda, it was ecumbent on the Justice Minister who is the Patriotic Front (PF) secretary general to immediately resign so that he could be probed without him interfering with the witnesses that would be subpeoned.
Speaking through his director of communications Muhabi Lungu, Dr Mumba said Kabimba would not have problems to consider his immediate resignation because there was already precedence and standards that had been set by former Transport and Communications minister in the MMD government Dora Siliya.
Dr Mumba said when a tribunal was set up to investigate Siliya when she was the Minister of Transport and Communications under former president Rupiah Banda, the Patriotic Front had courageously demanded for the dismissal of Siliya.
He said former president Banda had listened to the demands of the people and asked Siliya to step side and she was made to face the Tribunal.
Dr Mumba said it was the demand of the PF to have Siliya fired and that President Sata should not have difficulty in dismissing his Justice Minister because the Tribunal that has been established to investigate Kabimba was related to the functions of the Justice Minister.
The MMD president said Kabimba could not continue sitting in his ofice as Justice Minister and at the same time be a subject of investigations by the Tribunal.
Acting Chief Justice Chibesakunda on Tuesday established a three member Tribunal chaired by Justice Evans Hamaundu to investigate Kabimba who is the PF secretary general for passing a government legal opnion rendered to him in his capacity as Justice Minister by Solicitor General Musa Mwenye to private lawyers representing the ruling party.
“Following the establishment of the Tribunal to investigate Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba for abuse of ofice and authority, it is incumbent upon him (Kabimba) to resign with immediate effect. If he does not have the moral and integrity to resign on his own, President Sata must immediately fire him so that he could face the tribunal without interfering with the witnesses most of whom would come from the Judiciary. When a Tribunal was set up to investigate Dora Siliya, the PF strongly demanded for her dismissal and she was asked to step aside. So it should not be difficult for Kabimba to resign or to be fired by his boss,” Dr Mumba said.
Dr Mumba explained that rules were universal and therefore it was expected that the PF would not start manufacturing rules to suit their situations.
He said if Kabimba in connivance with President Sata remained in his office, it would be hypocricy of the worst kind.
And Dr Mumba has asked Justice Chibesakunda to read the message Acting Deputy Chief Justice Florence Mumba was sending to her (Chibesakunda) and the Judiciary by refusing to have her contract extended on account of age.
The MMD leader said his party was happy that Justice Mumba had decided to act in the interest of the integrity of the Judiciary and her own to refuse to have her contract elongated because she had reached retirement age.
Dr Mumba said Justice Chibesakunda should begin asking herself why should continue holding on to the office of the Chief Justice when she was far above the retirement age for which her deputy has used to retire.
“As the MMD, we commend Justice Florence Mumba for having been courageous enough to do the correct thing to save the integrity of the Judiciary. Although she may not be aware that she is sending the message to her boss, Justice Chibesakunda, we are asking the Acting Chief Justice to read the message and ask herself why she should continue holding to the office of the Chief Justice. She is much order than Justice Mumba and must follow the example of her junior,” Dr Mumba said.