Judge Chali insulted Changala says Mulongoti

Lusaka High Court Judge In-Charge Issac Chali must apologise to civil rights activist Brebner Changala for insulting him (Changala) in his ruling over the application demanding that cabinet must be compelled to establish a board of medical doctors to ascertain President Michael Sata’s physical and mental status to continue performing the functions of the office of president, People’s Party (PP) president Mike Mulongoti has said.

And Civil rights activist Brebner Changala has resubmitted his application to the Lusaka High Court insisting that President Michael Sata should be subjected to a board of medical doctors to examine his physical and mental status to continue performing presidential functions.

Mr Mulongoti has appealed to appropriate institutions such as the Judicial Complaints Commission (JCC) to study Judge Chali ruling on Mr Changala’s application and allow the civil rights activist seek solace over the abuse he suffered at the hands of the Lusaka High Court Judge In-Charge.

Mr Mulongoti said he did not think that Judges had the right to abuse litigants who run to the courts of law to seek justice because their mandate was to dispense justice and not to vilify citizens.

He stated that every citizen had the right to petition the courts of law on matters that bordered on justice and that it was highly injudicious for Judge Chali to have veered into personal attacks against Mr Changala who had gone to court on a matter that was of public interest.

Mr Mulongoti stated that Judge Chali in his ruling did not counsel Mr Changala in a proper and respective language but had exhibited anger against the litigant for seeking justice over national issues that were causing a lot of tension and anxieties among citizens.

He explained that instead of looking at the evidence Mr Changala had provided in his application, Judge Chali chose to attack the persona of the civil rights activist.

“While Judge Chali had the final say in his ruling over Mr Changala’s application to the High Court to compel cabinet to subject President Sata to a board of medical doctors to ascertain his physical and mental capacity to continue governing the country that did not include abusing the litigant.

I do not think that Judges have the right to abuse litigants when they go to the courts. Judge Chali owes Mr Changala an apology and we hope that appropriate institutions will allow him (Changala) to seek solace over the abuse he suffered at the hands of the Judge,” Mr Mulongoti said.

And Mr Changala told the Daily Nation yesterday that he had decided to resubmit his application because High Court Judge In-Charge Isaac Chali’s ruling did not address the issues he had raised in his affidavits.

Mr Changala said he had instructed his lawyers Makebi Zulu and Associates to resubmit his application after Judge Chali ignored his request to set up a Divisional Court of not less than three puisne Judges to preside over his matter.

Mr Changala said he was determined to pursue his application to the logical conclusion because it was his constitutional right to petition the courts of law to compel cabinet to constitute a medical board to examine President Sata because according to him, the Head of State had shown serious signs of failing health.

Mr Changala who said he was shocked by Judge Chali’s ruling and attack on his persona stated that it was unfortunate that the High Court Judge In-Charge could dismiss his application before considering his request to set up a Divisional Court to hear his case.

He said he has had difficulties in understanding Judge Chali’s ruling that was made in the absence of his lawyers particularly that the ruling mocked him as a busybody whose application was a misguided or trivial complaint of administrative error. Mr Changala complained that it was shocking that Judge Chali could rule that his (Changala) application was frivolous, vexatious and hopeless to the extent of not requiring further inquiry at a substantive inquiry at a substantive hearing.