Speaker cannot act before re-run – YALI

YALI Governance Advisor Isaac Mwanza
YALI Governance Advisor Isaac Mwanza

The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) has argued against the assumption that the Speaker of the National Assembly will act as Republican President if President Edgar Lungu’s election is petitioned.

YALI says President Lungu as the incumbent and president-elect will in fact continue to perform the executive functions as Republican President.

Governance advisor Isaac Mwanza says the understanding of his organization after carefully studying the Republican Constitution is that this will be the status quo until the President-elect is sworn in.

Mr. Mwanza has told QTV News that reading from Article 101 to Article 104 of the Constitution, it is clear that any petition brought at this stage when there has not been re-run will be brought under Article 101 clause 4 of the Constitution.

He says under this clause, there is no provision for the incumbent who has been declared President-elect under Article 101 clause 2 to step aside and allow the Speaker of the National Assembly to perform executive functions.

Mr. Mwanza notes that this entails any petition that is filed with the hope of having President Lungu step down before a re-run will go against the provisions of the Constitution.