MMD Solwezi Central member of Parliament (MP) Lucky Mulusa has lost his parliamentary seat following the Supreme Court’s nullification of his election yesterday.
And Mr Mulusa of the United Party for National Development (UPND), said immediately after the judgment that he is not negatively affected by the judgment because he has accepted the verdict.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has upheld the High Court’s judgment which declared Ambrose Lufumu as duly elected UPND Kabompo West MP.
Delivering judgment in Lusaka yesterday, acting Deputy Chief Justice Florence Mumba said Mulusa openly donated K1,000 to Luvwanani Evangelical Church and promised to buy the church a new keyboard after the September 2011 elections, which amounted to a bribe.
Ms Justice Mumba said witnesses testified that Mr Mulusa gave the choir K1,000 and also openly asked the congregants to vote for him.
She said Mr Mulusa gave the K1,000 to the church after everyone else had made their offering and asked whether he should go back home with the money or donate it to the church.
Mr Mulusa was petitioned by Patriotic Front (PF) candidate Newton Malwa.
Mr Malwa appealed against the High Court’s decision to declare Mr Mulusa as duly elected for Solwezi Central.
“On the whole, this appeal succeeds. We nullify the election of the respondent [Mr Mulusa] as MP for Solwezi Central Constituency. We order that each party will bear their own costs here and at the court below,” Ms Justice Mumba said.
She read the judgement on behalf of acting Chief Justice Lombe Chibesakunda and Supreme Court judges, who include justices Hilda Chibomba, Munyinda Wanki and Elizabeth Muyovwe.
Ms Justice Mumba said every election should be free and fair but Mr Mulusa’s was not in conformity with the required electoral laws.
She said in any election, a successful candidate who is petitioned is supposed to demonstrate that he did not do anything wrong and that the High Court misdirected itself when it failed to declare Mr Mulusa’s election null and void.
Ms Justice Mumba said although offertory in church is a Christian tradition and it is not forbidden in the Electoral Act, Mr Mulusa asked for votes from the congregants.
And Mr Mulusa, who promised to hold a press briefing today to give full details, told journalists that he has accepted the verdict and believes that “Zambia shall move forward”.
“I want the nation to believe in Jeremiah 29:11, where the Lord promises us of a prosperous future and not a future of disaster and given that, tomorrow I will announce what the Lord has passed on to me,” Mr Mulusa said.
“Zambia will move forward. I thank you all and I must tell all that I am not negatively affected, I accept the verdict. Thank you very much,” he said.
In the Kabompo petition, Ms Justice Mumba said PF’s candidate Joy Chijilo’s appeal fails because it lacks merit.
She said Ms Chijilo’s evidence was inconsistent and contradictory.